Mayor Eric Adams announced a shift in policy on asylum-seekers that includes a more formal process of resettling migrants throughout the state and in other cities across the U.S., reports Politico. The administration’s plans were outlined in a policy brief released Tuesday called The Road Forward: A Blueprint to Address New York City’s Response to the Asylum Seeker Crisis. “This blueprint we are releasing today highlights what we have accomplished since the crisis … it’s also going to show the changes we have put in place to move from an emergency response to a steady state of operation,” Adams said. The administration plans to brief more migrants on relocation opportunities and work with national nonprofits to identify welcoming cities where they might move. A separate program through the State University of New York will offer migrants the opportunity to relocate there and participate in a workforce training pilot and earn a credential or degree. In January, Adams criticized the governor of Colorado, a fellow Democrat, for busing migrants to New York City. A month later he admitted to coordinating one-way bus tickets to Plattsburgh, N.Y. for migrants who wanted to move to Canada.
The Office of Asylum Seeker Operations will coordinate efforts across multiple agencies that are now doing the work. The city plans to replace intake operations at the Port Authority, where asylum-seekers arrive by bus, with a new facility that will operate around the clock. The blueprint describes a broad shift from emergency response to what City Hall is calling steady state operations, a recognition that the influx of migrants is unlikely to abate soon. The city has spent roughly $650 million on providing services to the newcomers since the middle of last year. On Monday, the city’s budget director expressed dim hopes the administration would be getting any federal reimbursement beyond an unspecified portion of the $800 million in Federal Emergency Management Agency grant money already earmarked for cities around the country.