Governor Hochul looking to green light work authorizations for migrants in New York City

Darla Miles Image
Wednesday, September 13, 2023
New York officials look for new ways to handle migrant crisis
In a new Siena College poll, 82% of voters in New York say the influx of migrants is a serious problem. Darla Miles has more on what officials are doing to manage the migrant crisis.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York Governor Kathy Hochul is attempting to green light work authorizations for tens of thousands of migrants looking for a new life in New York City.

"My attorneys are working on it as we speak," Hochul said Tuesday. "I spoke about this at the White House. I said I may do something at the state level."

Monday, New York City Mayor Eric Adams directed city agencies to cut their budgets by 5% to help manage the ballooning costs of the migrant crisis.

Adams says that regardless of budget cuts, he cannot solve the migrant crisis at the city level.

"I can't break the law and say 'I'm going to allow you to work anyway,'" said Adams. "Now people are working, and we're creating a black market of employment with low wages. Women are being sexually exploited."

In a Siena College poll released Tuesday 84% of New Yorkers said they agree migrants are here to build a better life, just 11% disagree.

"This would be unprecedented," said Hochul. "I believe the feds, the federal government, we need to have their authority to move forward with state work permits."

Even so, work authorizations for migrants would take time.

If Governor Hochul works out an agreement with the federal government to issue state permits, it would also need to be approved by the state legislature - which might require a special session.

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