MIDTOWN, Manhattan (WABC) — The street behind the Roosevelt Hotel in Midtown was filled with parked mopeds and motorcycles Wednesday evening, a sign that migrants are working whether they are authorized to do so or not.
Expediting work permits is one way New York City Mayor Eric Adams is asking the federal government for help.
Those who work are less likely to need expensive emergency accommodation after the 30 or 60 day limit has expired.
“You can’t come to this city and expect that as long as you want to stay here, you can stay here forever at taxpayer expense, and that’s what the 30 days and the 60 days are all about,” Mayor Adams said.
After their deadline expires, migrants can reapply for accommodation. Usually they are not denied, as the mayor says the goal is to ensure that no one sleeps on the streets or in police stations, as is the case in other cities flooded with newcomers.
On Thursday, Adams and the mayors of Denver, Chicago, Los Angeles and Houston will jointly ask the White House and Congress for more support.
“We have specifically asked Congress for nearly $1.5 billion in additional grants to support local communities,” White House deputy press secretary Emilie Simons said Wednesday.
The White House, responding to questions about recent cries for help from cities, said the Department of Homeland Security is working on faster work permits.
“Since last month, DHS has taken steps to reduce the average processing time for certain migrants to just 30 days,” Simons said.
As that city continues to struggle to house migrants, a shelter at federally controlled Floyd Bennet Field is preparing to welcome 500 migrants. However, because there are questions about security, no one has moved in yet.
This is just one of the current challenges in the crisis, with the bigger question being how much the city will end up raising.
“I don’t see this ending unless the federal government does something,” Adams said.
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