Newborns could enter this world with money in the bank.
New Jersey is proposing the first-ever statewide baby bond, which would put $1,000 into an account for every baby born starting in 2021. All families earning up to $131,000 a year would be eligible for the program.
Gov. Phil Murphy said there's no other state doing something like the proposed plan, calling it a boost for families that need it the most.
"This idea would benefit three out of every four children born in our state," Murphy said, adding that the money would accrue interest and would become available on the child turns 18 years old. He said that the bond is meant to help communities of color, and communities where economic opportunities are more limited.
"At this particular time, when so many families are struggling with how they will pay their bills, or seeing their hard earned savings disappear, let's make a promise to the next generation of New Jerseyans," Murphy said.
The plan still needs approval from the state legislature. Some parents wondered if the money would really have much of an impact.
"Things are very expensive. Rent, clothes, food, school, literally everything," said Jada Deliz. "I've been a single parent for five years now. My son is five and he's a blessing but it's also been very stressful."
Another woman said that the proposed bond would not "incentivize anyone to start a family. $1,000 is not a lot of money," Vivian Delvalle said.
The plan would cost the state about $80 million a year in taxpayer money. While critics aren't on board, others say planning for the future is a start.
"I think it would be great. Set up a college fund, especially in this economy, that would be amazing," said Ilana Prager.
At the current 30-year bond rate, a $1,000 bond issued on Tuesday would mature to about $1,300 after 18 years. Gov. Murphy also said he hasn't ruled out adding more money to the accounts over the years.