NEW YORK (PIX11) — The arrival of tens of thousands of migrants has strained New York City’s budget, creating unexpected costs, Mayor Eric Adams said Thursday.
Nearly 40,000 asylum seekers have come to the city and it’s estimated to cost at least $1 billion in this fiscal year, Adams said. While the federal government has provided some financial assistance, it isn’t nearly enough. Adams’ office said the federal government has allocated $785 million to be shared nationally, with only a fraction earmarked for NYC.
“This will not come close to covering what we need,” Adams said. “New Yorkers will be left footing the bill, now and in the future.”
Comptroller Brad Lander, the city’s money man, joined Adams in a call for the state and federal government to provide more funds for the cost of services and shelter for asylum seekers. He said it’s “something they both have failed to do thus far.”
“This city has long been a beacon of hope for immigrant families and has prospered from their contributions, but we need state and federal aid to help them land on their feet,” Lander said.
Adams recently noted that members of the Office of Management and Budget, his mayoral team and Deputy Mayor Anne Williams-Isom have met many times to work on the problem.
“We have to find ways of carrying out this task without bankrupting this city,” Adams said.
Gov. Kathy Hochul did not mention support for the tens of thousands of migrants during her Tuesday State of the State address. In October, Hochul told PIX11 News she’d had multiple conversations with President Joe Biden on the issue. She said she’s asked for federal aid for shelter and food.
“I said, ‘this is a federal problem,’” Hochul said of her conversation with Biden. “Now these individuals, they’re human beings and they’re being used as political pawns and that’s disgraceful. But we also need a strong federal response at the border to begin the resettlement process or just a pass toward asylum for those who are legitimately seeking it.”