Aug 9, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Mayor says migrant crisis will cost NYC $12B without state, federal aid

New York Mayor Eric Adams attends a press conference on gun violence prevention and public safety on July 31, 2023 in New York City.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams during a July press conference in NYC. Photo: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

Mayor Eric Adams (D) urged the Biden administration on Wednesday to declare a state of emergency over the southern border to help officials respond to large numbers of asylum seekers arriving in New York City.

Thought bubble via Axios' Stef Kight: It's the latest cry for help from Democratic-run cities struggling to care for a surge in newly arrived asylum seekers who initially crossed the U.S.-Mexico border — putting even more political pressure on an administration that's struggled to get control of the border from day 1.

Driving the news: Adams said at a New York City Hall news conference Wednesday that NYC residents faced a potential $12 billion bill to pay for the asylum seekers over the next three fiscal years "without policy changes and further support" from state and federal governments.

  • "Over the last year, nearly 100,000 asylum seekers have arrived in our city looking for a new life. New York City has managed the problem largely by ourselves," Adams said in a statement.
  • "This is a national crisis that's begged for a national response since day one," he added. "Despite our tireless effort, we're running out of resources."
A screenshot of a tweet by New York City Mayor Eric Adams, saying: "Cities like New York, Boston, Chicago, El Paso, Houston, and Los Angeles can't and shouldn’t be left to shoulder a national crisis alone. We need the federal government to take immediate action.   Thank you to all the New Yorkers working to help those seeking asylum navigate the process."
Photo: New York City Mayor Eric Adams/X

By the numbers: Adams said the city estimates spending $4.7 billion this year if it does not receive "proper support."

  • City figures show it spends $383 per night on each household and is now caring for 57,000 people, adding up to $9.8 million per day.

The big picture: Adams has for months criticized the Biden administration over the humanitarian crisis at the border and appealed for more help after Republican governors bussed thousands of migrants to Democratic-run cities like NYC, which guarantees services to migrants that many other cities do not.

For the record: In June, illegal border crossing numbers fell to the lowest level in over two years in June.

  • The White House did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.
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