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NYC is Spending $387 per Illegal Immigrant Per Day, and They Have Over 65,000 of Them

NYC is Spending $387 per Illegal Immigrant Per Day, and They Have Over 65,000 of Them
Image Credit: Maria Paula Mijares Torres

New York City is grappling with the financial burden of sheltering migrants, with each household costing taxpayers an average of $387 per day in taxpayer-funded shelters, according to recent data from City Hall. This figure, known as the “cumulative per diem,” reflects the city’s expenditures on housing and feeding migrant households daily since the onset of the crisis in spring 2022.

Gradual Decline in Daily Expenditures

Gradual Decline in Daily Expenditures
Image Credit: United Liberty

Despite efforts to rein in spending amid the ongoing crisis, the daily cost per migrant household has gradually decreased over time. From October 2023 to February 2024, the average daily expenditure dropped from $392 to $387. City Hall attributes this decline to cost-cutting measures implemented by Mayor Eric Adams’ administration, aiming to mitigate the financial strain caused by the influx of migrants.

Mayor’s Cost-Cutting Measures

Mayors Cost Cutting Measures
Image Credit: Youtube – CBS New York

Mayor Adams has taken proactive steps to address the escalating costs associated with the migrant crisis. Last November, he instructed all city agencies to reduce spending by 5%, followed by an additional 5% cut in January. 

Additional Reductions Halted

Additional Reductions Halted
Image Credit: Youtube – Fox 5 New York

These measures were intended to offset the projected $10 billion expenditure attributed to the migrant crisis through the next fiscal year. Despite initial plans for further budget cuts, Mayor Adams halted additional reductions last month, citing improved revenue and reduced migrant spending.

Forecasted Reductions and Fiscal Outlook

Forecasted Reductions and Fiscal Outlook
Image Credit: United Liberty

City Hall projects a further decline in daily sheltering costs for asylum seekers, estimating an average of $386 per day for the 2024 fiscal year and a decrease to $352 for FY25. These forecasts reflect ongoing efforts to manage the migrant population efficiently and reduce per-diem expenses. 

State Support

State Support
Image Credit: United Liberty

Additionally, city officials emphasize the need for continued support from state and federal partners to address the financial implications of the migrant crisis effectively.

Disparity in Shelter Costs

Disparity in Shelter Costs
Image Credit: United Liberty

Comparatively, the per diem cost of sheltering migrants far exceeds that of housing the homeless population in New York City. Department of Social Services Commissioner Molly Wasow Park attributes this disparity to the high expense associated with accommodating asylum seekers in commercial hotels, highlighting the need for cost-effective alternatives.

Anticipated Changes and Future Strategies

Anticipated Changes and Future Strategies
Image Credit: United Liberty

Commissioner Wasow Park anticipates changes in asylum numbers as the city strives to manage costs effectively. Moving forward, New York City aims to implement strategic measures to mitigate financial burdens while ensuring the humane treatment of migrants seeking refuge within its borders.

Dual Challenge

Dual Challenge
Image Credit: United Liberty

As New York City navigates the complexities of the migrant crisis, policymakers face the dual challenge of upholding fiscal responsibility and fulfilling their humanitarian obligations to those in need.

Broader Fiscal Challenges

Broader Fiscal Challenges
Image Credit: United Liberty

What do you think? How do the cost-cutting measures implemented by Mayor Adams reflect broader fiscal challenges faced by cities grappling with the migrant crisis? What strategies can New York City and other urban centers adopt to manage the financial burden of sheltering migrants more effectively while ensuring the provision of essential services?

Alleviating The Financial Strain

Alleviating The Financial Strain
Image Credit: United Liberty

How might the disparity in shelter costs between migrants and the homeless population impact public perception and policy responses to homelessness and migration? In what ways can partnerships with state and federal governments help alleviate the financial strain on cities like New York in addressing humanitarian crises such as the influx of migrants?

Tony Bonnani
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