The Orange County executive thought he had an understanding: New York City would hold off on sending buses of migrants to Newburgh, NY, about 60 miles to the north, until some sort of agreement was reached on the practice. It looks like state officials are on the same page.
But then an employee of the Bear Mountain Bridge alerted Orange County Executive Steven Neuhaus early Thursday morning that he had seen a bus crossing with New York Police escorts.
The city had dispatched two buses of migrants. They arrived at the Crossroads Hotel in Newburgh 15 minutes after the activist was alerted, and were met by protesters and supporters as well as local police officers who had spent the night at the hotel.
A few hours ago on Wednesday night, a spokesman for Mayor Eric Adams tentatively announced Stop In such transport.
A state official, who was not authorized to speak publicly, said the city had not told the state they were reintroducing busing, a claim repeated by Mr. Neuhaus, but Mr. Adams’ spokesman Fabian Disputed by Levy.
“He is wrong and we have made that very clear,” Mr Levy said. “We never said anything like that. In fact, we only said yesterday that that program was put on hold, but our plan didn’t change.
The apparent miscommunication underscores the difficulties Mr. Adams faces as he frantically calls on his fellow New York officials for help in the face of a potentially dramatic increase in the already massive influx of migrants into New York City.
On Thursday night, the federal government stopped using Title 42, a Trump-era policy to rapidly deport hundreds of thousands of immigrants, some of whom might otherwise have been granted asylum.
Thousands of asylum-seeking migrants are now expected to arrive in New York City, the only major municipality in the United States to offer shelter to all homeless people under its “right to shelter” mandate.
While Mr Adams has spent the past year warning about the impact a surge in migrant numbers would have on the city, critics say he hasn’t done as much planning. Just last Friday, he announced he would send migrants to two upstate counties, both run by Republicans. And just last Sunday, he demanded that leaders of city agencies send him a list of all facilities with enough space to accommodate large numbers of migrants.
In sending the buses to Orange County, the mayor bypassed friendly territory, such as Westchester County, which is led by a Democrat.
During tense, hour-long talks with more than 100 leaders from across the state on Thursday, some leaders expressed their belief that Mr. Adams was not working effectively with allies.
During that call, a recording of which was obtained by The New York Times, Orange County Executive Mr. Neuhaus complained about miscommunication directly to Mr. Adams, while also implicating the state as a mediator.
“Last night the governor’s office promised us that we would stop everything,” Mr. Neuhaus said. “And New York City sent buses anyway.” He said, “It’s a problem, Mr. Mayor.”
“Steve, you know who can’t get a break?” Mr Adams responded by referring to the influx of migrants. “Eric Adams.”
More than 65,000 migrants have come to New York City in the past year, according to new numbers released by city officials on that call, and about 40,000 of them are in the city’s care at 130 emergency shelters and eight mass centers.
During the call, Mr Adams criticized state leaders for not joining in lobbying Washington for more aid in dealing with migrants.
But upstate leaders said they were not closely following news of New York City’s migrant issue and could not be expected to lobby independently on the city’s behalf.
Several state officials compared Mr. Adams’ actions to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott of Texas, who is moving migrants to New York City with little notice and no funding.
In contrast, Mr. Adams has promised funding for up to four months of hotel housing and services for migrants who voluntarily move to the suburbs, and during Thursday’s call, he told state officials he would help those stranded Will not leave
“I’m treating your municipalities, your cities the same way I want the people who are shipping mine to be treated,” Mr. Adams said.
On Wednesday night, Mr. Adams also moved to suspend some rules related to the right to shelter, including how soon the city must place families with children in private rooms with bathrooms and kitchens.
“It was a difficult decision,” Mr Adams said during a news conference on Thursday. “But it’s the right decision. What’s happening to New York City is absolutely wrong. It’s wrong. And nobody seems to care.
At a rally Thursday in a park at City Hall, immigration advocates argued that the expiration of Title 42 represented an opportunity for the city to continue its historic role of welcoming immigrants.
Holding signs that said “Migrants are New Yorkers”, they called on President Biden to do more to help the city.
“We need federal resources because people will come to the city,” said Councilwoman Carlina Rivera, who represents Manhattan’s Lower East Side. “They see the woman in the port. They know we’re a sanctuary city.