New York refugee crisis could soon cost $12 billion: Mayor Adams

By June 2024, New York City’s growing migrant population is expected to double – meaning the city will need to accommodate 100,000 homeless migrants – as costs are estimated to soar to a staggering peak of $12 billion over the next three years.

“We’ve exceeded our breaking point,” Adams said in a somber address at City Hall on Wednesday, a day when he implored the government and New Yorkers alike to help contain the crisis.

According to officials, the city currently spends an average of $383 per night per 25,600 asylum-seeking households — including families with children, adult couples and single people — on housing, food and other services.

“With more than 57,300 people currently in our care on an average night, that works out to $9.8 million per day. Almost $300 million a month and almost $3.6 billion a year,” the mayor said.

“This is the floor, not the ceiling,” he warned, hinting that the city’s current spending could rise even further.

New figures released by the city’s Department of Budget and Governance show the cost could rise to $4.7 billion by June 2024 — a jump from the current estimate of $2.9 billion over the same period.

Migrants stand in line at the Roosevelt Hotel
Migrants line up in front of the Roosevelt Hotel.
Set Gottfried

Migrants stand in line at the Roosevelt Hotel.
By June 2024, the growing number of immigrants in New York City is expected to double.
Set Gottfried

“That’s more than the $1.4 billion we spent last fiscal year, and it’s nearly equal to the budgets of the Sanitation Department, our Parks Department and the FDNY combined,” the mayor added.

“Unless things change, we expect to serve more than 100,000 asylum seekers by the end of June 2025 — taking projected spending to $6.1 billion this fiscal year if we don’t change course.” .”

Adams said the new projections would take city costs to $12 billion by the end of June 2025 — a massive increase from the previously projected $4.3 billion by the end of 2024.

“To meet that need, we need to add $7 billion to our financial plan, and that’s on top of what we’ve already spent on this crisis,” he added, acknowledging that any service the City spends taxpayers’ money will have an impact cutting board.

The city braces itself for a big bill as the number of immigrants explodes.

“I told the team early last week that we need to do a real analysis of our spending and we need to actually cut that area – so everyone across the board is being cut,” he said.

“If we can save a dollar or two on meals, if we can save on laundry because all these sheets need cleaning. If we can save on napkins, we can save everywhere. We are looking everywhere for ways to lower costs for asylum seekers.”

“We have to proceed across the board,” he stated, without naming specific programs.

As of spring 2022, around 100,000 migrants have arrived in the Big Apple and over 57,300 people are currently living in 198 shelters across the five boroughs.

“Nearly 100,000 men, women and children have asked to stay. That’s almost the population of Albany, New York!” said Hizzoner, comparing the size to that of the state capital.

Officials tracked 2,900 new migrants arriving in the city in the first week of this month, between July 30 and August 6.

During this period, the crisis erupted when dozens of migrants slept on the street in front of Midtown’s Roosevelt Hotel because the city didn’t provide them with beds.

City Hall has also implemented a new strategy to free up shelters, issuing single migrants an eviction notice requiring them to reapply for shelter after the 60 days are up.

As of Tuesday, 1,450 people have received their “60-day notice period,” which OMB officials said will help reduce the overall number of emergency shelters in the city.

About 20 migrants, women and men, board a city bus at about 11:30 a.m. from the Roosevelt Hotel.
The city spends $9.8 million on housing migrant families every day.
Robert Miller

Migrants sleep in front of the Roosevelt Hotel.
Migrants sleep in front of the Roosevelt Hotel.
Set Gottfried

Migrants and asylum seekers line up in front of a converted lodging at the Roosevelt Hotel on Wednesday, August 2.
Migrants and asylum seekers line up August 2 in front of a converted lodging at the Roosevelt Hotel.
James Keivom

Adams accused both the state and federal governments of failing to allocate adequate funds and space to house migrants as the city has been looking for housing within the five boroughs — even targeting attractions like a tent city at the Central Park considered.

The city has been allocated approximately $140 million by the Biden administration and governor. Kathy Hochul has included $1 billion in the recently passed state budget for this purpose.

City-run legal aid centers have so far helped 1,700 people apply for work permits as lawmakers pressure Washington to ease restrictions on work permits.

Meanwhile, the Adams government has challenged the city’s Housing Right Act, which requires the city to provide housing to anyone who does not have a home in the counties.

“You come to New York City and we are to feed you, clothe you and house you for as long as you wish,” Adams said, referring to the mandate.

“It’s just not sustainable. It’s not realistic. Because of this, you will find that people come from all over.”

In a joint statement Wednesday, the Legal Aid Society and the Coalition for the Homeless called on the federal government to work to maintain the policy.

“We join Mayor Adams in calling for Washington and Albany to significantly increase resources in the form of funding, staffing, facilities, coordination, work permits for newcomers and more to enable the Adams administration to comply with all related court orders and local laws .” the right to protection,” the statement said.

Around 1000 demonstrators came with Curtis Sliwa to the anti-migrant tent demonstration.
Around 1,000 protesters, along with Curtis Sliwa, turned up at the August 8 anti-migrant tent demonstration.
Ellis Chaplain

The construction of a new one "city ​​of migrants" started on Randall's Island at slot 83.
Construction of a new “migrant city” has begun on Randall’s Island at Field 83.
Matthew McDermott

At an independent news conference in Brooklyn, Gov. Kathy Hochul said she will persuade Albany lawmakers to add another $1 billion in next year’s state budget to help the city weather the crisis.

“It’s just what we’re doing because I think it’s the right thing to do. It’s not because of a legal obligation because the right to shelter, which the city must act by, does not apply to the state of New York.”

“Regardless of that, I’ve committed tremendous resources and we’re not done yet,” Hochul said.

“There has to be money to support the city. “This is a humanitarian crisis that you did not create yourself,” said the Democrat.

Hochul added that she’s been in “constant communication with the White House” to try to get officials to expedite work permits for migrants and to use federal properties around the city, like Floyd Bennett Field, as shelter locations.


JACLYN DIAZ is a USTimeToday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. JACLYN DIAZ joined USTimeToday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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