Governor Kathy Hochul expressed strong concerns about United States border policies, calling for entry restrictions and an increase in agents to handle illegal migrants.
Talking with CBS News on Sunday, October 1st, Hochul remarked, “We want them to have a limit on who can come across the border. It is too open right now. People coming from all over the world are finding their way through, simply saying they need asylum, and the majority of them seem to be ending up in the streets of New York and that is a real problem for New York City.”
She continued, “It’s in our DNA to welcome immigrants. But there has to be some limits in place.”
The governor’s remarks came after more than 260,000 migrants crossed the U.S. border just last month alone.
Hochul called on Congress to bolster border controls, stating, “Congress has to put more controls at the border and not in this budget threat, shutdown threat. Talk about eliminating positions for Border Patrol, well, we actually need to double or quadruple those numbers. So get back to work and do your jobs.”
New York City has been grappling with accommodating over 110,000 migrants since the previous spring.
The city has implemented measures such as erecting a tent city on Manhattan’s Randall’s Island, funded by state resources.
Mayor Eric Adams estimated that the costs related to the new arrivals could reach $12 billion over three years, potentially affecting city services.
In August, the governor had pinpointed the Biden administration for not extending enough support during the ongoing migrant surge.
In the interview, Hochul also criticized GOP lawmakers for their lack of cooperation with the federal government on the migrant issue.
She said, “Speaker McCarthy and the Republicans in Congress, including the nine from New York State who are complaining like crazy about the migrants but refuse to work with President Biden and come up with a sensible border strategy. It can be done. This can be done in a bipartisan way, comprehensive immigration reform.”
Hochul has previously expressed reservations about the city’s “right to shelter” law, which ensures housing rights for New Yorkers, a provision that has been advantageous for asylum seekers.
Last month, the governor said, “The original premise behind the right to shelter was, for starters, for homeless men on the streets, people experiencing AIDS, that was [then] extended to families.
She added, “But never was it envisioned being an unlimited universal right, or obligation on the city, to house literally the entire world.”