NEW YORK (PIX11) — New York City Mayor Eric Adams said the migrant crisis is now projected to cost the city $12 billion.
Adams made the announcement amid another plea for the federal government to step in — or risk major service cuts to every city agency.
The new number covers everything already spent on the migrant crisis, as well as everything that’s expected to be spent over the next roughly two years.
“We are past our breaking point. New Yorkers’ compassion may be limitless, but our resources are not,” Adams said during prepared remarks on Wednesday.
Nearly 100,000 migrants have been bused to town over the last year. The city is still directly caring for more than 57,000 across 200 emergency shelters, according to officials.
Currently, the city is shelling out $9.8 million a day.
Adams said the city already spent about a billion and a half dollars, and this coming year it will spend about $4.7 billion more.
“It nearly equals the budgets of the Sanitation Department, our Parks Department, and the FDNY combined,” Adams said.
After his prepared remarks, Adams addressed reporters surrounded by his team. He told New Yorkers to brace for the impact if the federal government does not soon come through with more money and expedited work permits for the migrants, which would hopefully make many more self-sufficient and less reliant on the city.
“Every service in this city will be impacted,” the mayor said without providing specifics.
As for what’s driving the cost, the mayor’s budget director said most of it is paying for shelter, and he admitted there are a lot of unknowns due to “so many moving pieces.”
That includes how much it will cost to educate thousands of migrant children this coming school year, and potential savings if more asylum seekers are allowed to work.
However, the mayor reiterated that under no circumstances would his administration begin turning back buses — even when he was asked if showing compassion sends the wrong message and ultimately invites more migrants.
“You have to go with your conscience and do what’s morally right,” Adams said.
The mayor did add a note of optimism in his remarks. He now believes after months of prodding, White House officials may be understanding the scale of what New York is facing.