New York Town Declares State of Emergency Ahead of Migrants Expected Arrival

A Riverhead town official said hotels that house migrants will be in violation of town code under the executive order.


A town official on Long Island, New York, issued a state of emergency this week to bar local hotels from housing migrants anticipated to arrive from New York City.

Republican Riverhead Town Supervisor Yvette Aguiar said Tuesday her decision came after New York City Mayor Eric Adams sent an advisory communication to housing facilities in Suffolk County, informing them the city would pay for migrants leaving the city to stay up to a year at places like local hotels and motels, if they accepted them, News 12 Long Island reported.

Aguiar told the news station three facilities in Riverhead offered to provide housing to the individuals, although she was not certain which ones did so. Aguiar's executive order said the community was unable to handle the influx of out-of-town visitors, according to the outlet.

“Relative to the surrounding townships on the East End and throughout Suffolk County, Riverhead has done more than its share when it comes to housing the homeless, providing services and offering affordable housing and our resources and taxpayers simply cannot withstand further demand on our public services," Aguiar said.

Facilities who agreed to take in the migrants will be put on notice that housing them will mean they are violating town code, according to News 12.

“They’re not supposed to accept them and that’s something we would deal with in the courts,” Aguiar told the station.

Officials in New York City have struggled to keep up with the large number of migrants — as many as 65,000 asylum seekers — who have made their way to the five boroughs in recent months.

Adams has said the city expects more arrivals will come following the end of Title 42, the COVID-19 pandemic-related asylum regulations, which expired last week.

So far, the city has sought out locations to provide shelter to arriving migrants, including within public school buildings and a planned arrival center at the Roosevelt Hotel in Midtown Manhattan. Some New York City school gyms were allocated to house migrants, a "drastic step" that prompted protests by some parents, The Messenger previously reported.

"The neighborhood is definitely bearing its brunt of the crisis," Kyra, the mother of a second grader at Brooklyn's PS 172, told The Messenger Tuesday. "We are arguing that this is not humane for anyone to live in."

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