ALBANY, N.Y. (WTEN) — With the expiration of Title 42 and New York being a sanctuary state, Republican lawmakers are proposing legislation to address what they call a “migrant crisis.” This past year, busloads of migrants were transported to New York City. As the numbers of migrants continue to rise, Mayor Adams recently proposed to send some migrants to Rockland and Orange County. Both County Executives responded by declaring a state of emergency.
Senate Minority Leader Rob Ortt addressed this at a press conference on Wednesday. “Here’s sorta the truth that no one ever wants to talk about… someone’s always gotta be displaced. When you’re bringing in thousands, millions – I don’t even know how many it is, tens of thousands of illegal migrants – and you’re putting them in different communities, you’re putting them in hotels, you’re displacing others. You’re taking resources from others. There’s no two ways about it,” said Ortt.
Senator Rob Rolison’s district includes the town of Newburgh, where he says a number of veterans have been displaced from the Crossroads Motel. “These are individuals who are dealing with all kinds of issues, that I dare say, most of us right here, right now, are not dealing with…Then all of a sudden one day, you’re told, ‘You’re gonna have to get out’ because essentially, they get paid $88 a night for a homeless vet, but the City of New York is gonna give somewhere around $300,” explained Rolison. His legislation would prevent vulnerable communities like the disabled, veterans or victims of domestic violence from being displaced. “When you move people around, especially ones that are the most vulnerable, that sets them back. Sets them back from a place that you’re trying to get them to and it’s just not fair,” he said.
And Senator Bill Weber, whose district occupies Rockland County, is proposing legislation that will give control to local municipalities to issue a state of emergency that would supersede the state. “So this way, the state can’t come in and override the local state of emergency that we had to again, do – and what other future counties may have to do,” he said.
Those bills have been introduced, but not yet voted on. Governor Hochul did have a meeting with multiple members of Congress on Wednesday to address the migrant situation, but it’s unknown if any progress has been made.