The fight over transferring asylum seekers from New York City to its suburbs was in the national spotlight Tuesday.
The town supervisor for Orangetown Republican Teresa Kenny testified before a congressional committee, blasting New York City Mayor Eric Adams.
“What is happening in Orangetown is not unique. It is playing out throughout communities all over our country,” Kenny told lawmakers.
Adams unveiled his bussing plan earlier this month as part of an effort to relieve the city’s overcrowded shelters.
“I received a call from a member of the mayor’s staff, and that’s when I learned that the plan was to house single adult males in a local hotel, and that the buses would be arriving imminently,” Kenny testified.
In response to the mayor’s plans, Rockland County declared a state of emergency, prohibiting the housing of migrants in area hotels without a permit.
Gov. Kathy Hochul has since told Spectrum News 1 that her team is helping the Adams administration find welcoming communities for the migrants.
At Tuesday’s hearing, lawmakers fell into familiar camps on the immigration issue. Republicans, including Rep. Mike Lawler from the Lower Hudson Valley, described the border as a crisis.
“The idea that we do not have open borders is laughable on its face,” Lawler said. “Couple that with New York’s sanctuary city policy, and you have a recipe for disaster.”
Democrats, meanwhile, argued the Biden White House is working to get things on track, noting that predictions of a surge after the end of COVID-era immigration restrictions earlier this month have so far not come to fruition.
“The numbers dropped - dropped - by 70 percent following the expiration of Title 42, but the fear mongering continues,” said Manhattan Rep. Jerry Nadler.
Earlier this month, congressional lawmakers from the Hudson Valley called on the Biden White House to declare a state of emergency for New York over the migrant situation.
One office told Spectrum News 1 Tuesday that they so far have not received an official response.