Colorado Gov. Jared Polis said he would halt busing migrants from Denver to New York City and Chicago after those cities' mayors argued that their shelters were already overrun. New York Mayor Eric Adams and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot told Polis that “overburdening other cities” isn’t the solution to the burden of the wave of asylum seekers. Polis said no more buses were scheduled to Chicago and a final charter to New York was completed Sunday. Colorado and other states have struggled to manage the influx of asylum seekers entering the U.S. illegally, reports the Wall Street Journal. More than 1,400 arrived in Denver last month. Their arrival led to jockeying between states and municipalities over how to shelter the migrants.
“The buses have arrived, without any regard to either city’s ability to appropriately shelter them,” Lightfoot and Adams told Polis in a letter sent Saturday. The relocation of migrants from the southern U.S. border got attention last year when Texas Gov. Greg Abbott bussed asylum seekers from the U.S. southern border to Democratic-led cities, including New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., as an attempt to highlight illegal crossings. Since Abbott sent migrants to their cities, New York and Chicago have reached maximum capacity at shelters and their resources are exhausted, Adams and Lightfoot. Since August, Chicago has added 3,854 migrants from Texas; 1,600 of those are in its shelter system. An estimated 36,400 asylum seekers have gone through New York City’s emergency intake system, and shelters are at capacity. Adams said he would consider legal action to stop states and cities from busing migrants to New York.