The plan to house illegal immigrants until August 2026 is expected to bring the projected cost since the crisis began in 2022 to $1.35 billion.
As the New York Post reports, the extension was brought up during a City Council meeting last week. Department Department of Social Services/Homeless Services Commissioner Molly Wassor Park said the city was working to transition away from hotels to other forms of shelter, but that the move would take time.
She added that the contract extension was to be done "one time instead of year-by-year," explaining that by doing so, the city would "have some predictability."
A spokesperson with the DDS told the Post on Monday that the extension is "designed to provide capacity as needed," but also "provides the flexibility to scale back or terminate if circumstances on the ground change."
NYCHA officials have not yet reviewed the details of the extension, though CEO Vijay Dandapani lamented that while it was likely necessary, the hotel industry "has the infrastructure to cope with the crisis."
Adams recently announced that the city anticipated it will have paid over $12 billion to deal with an estimated 100,000 illegal immigrants by 2025, however, it was not made clear whether the $1.35 billion hotel contract was included in that figure.
The city spent $1.4 billion dealing with the problem in Fiscal Year 2022, and close to $5 billion in FY2023. To put that number in perspective, it is higher than the budgets of the Sanitation Department, Parks Department, and Fire Department combined.
Adams stated that the city is "running out of money, appropriate space, and personnel to care for [migrant] families," and called on the state and federal government for assistance.
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