Driven to increasingly desperate measures by an endless flood of foreign migrants, New York City Mayor Eric Adams on Monday proposed that the city pay individual New Yorkers to host the foreigners in their homes.
At the same press conference, Adams announced New York City will begin paying up to 50 houses of worship about $125 a night to host up to 19 single men on their properties. That's a relative steal for the city, which has been paying hotels $380, according to the New York Post. Adams didn't propose a dollar figure for families and individuals.
Adams framed both ideas as ways to prevent money from ending up in corporate coffers:
"We can take that $4.2 billion, or $4.3 billion maybe now, that we potentially have to spend, and we can put it back in the pockets of everyday New Yorkers, everyday houses of worship instead of putting it in the pockets of corporations, and some of those corporations come from outside of our city."
The city now has more than 45,000 illegal immigrants living in taxpayer-funded hotels and shelters. A month ago, the city was paying $8 million a day to house migrants -- and that's when there were "only" 37,500 of them.
Expanding on the idea of converting migrant-shelter funds into local economic stimulus, Adams said, “There are [New York City] residents who are suffering right now because of economic challenges. They have spare rooms. They have locales,” said Adams at a press conference. “We should be recycling our own dollars. We should take this crisis and go to opportunities. That is how we can deal with this.”
The idea strikes us as a bureaucratic nightmare and another government program that's ripe for fraud. After payments start flowing, the city would have to find a way to verify that migrants are actually still living at a given residence whose owner or renter is cashing in on the deal.
In addition to those pitfalls, many New Yorkers would probably be uneasy if their neighbors started taking in random migrants. Adams gave no indication he'd put migrants in his house.
In another example of governments easing regulations when it serves their interest, Adams said he'd seek changes in rules regarding tenants, including changing state laws to authorize basement apartments, which today are generally banned.
“This influx of asylum seekers is a serious crisis, one that New York City is facing largely on our own," said Adams. "It’s unfair and it’s not right that New York is going through this,” said the mayor of America's largest "sanctuary city."
In May, Adams outraged parents of school-age children by putting migrants, many of them adult men, in school gyms -- even at elementary schools. “Schools are kept secure for a reason. Parents have to sign in and provide ID when they go into school — now there are migrants in the playground,” parent Damaris Fernandez told the New York Post.
Last month also brought reports of couples whose wedding plans were upended when hotel reservations for their wedding parties were canceled so the properties could be used to house illegal immigrants instead.