Counties press federal officials for aid to help municipalities with costs from migrants
Press Release, New York State Association of Counties
New York counties are calling on federal representatives to provide emergency financial aid to local communities nationwide that are managing large influxes of migrants and asylees. In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, counties called for the extension of the Federal Impact Aid program to counties and school districts dealing with the recent influx of asylum seekers.
The federal government provides Impact Aid to certain school districts whose ability to provide services is negatively impacted by the actions of the federal government–like the removal of federal government property from property tax rolls. Today’s action by county leaders seeks to expand that program to include the counties, school districts, cities, and other localities that are currently impacted by the large influxes of migrants and asylees across the country.
“As the result of federal inaction on immigration, local governments across New York State and the nation have been left with the impossible task of housing, educating, and providing basic care to hundreds of thousands of migrants who have arrived on our shores seeking a better life,” said NYSAC Executive Director Stephen Acquario. “Until the Congress resolves this federally created crisis, they must step up and provide fair and sufficient resources to all communities impacted by the federal lack of action to date.”
The large influx of migrants and asylees is a direct result of the federal government’s unwillingness or inability to fix outdated federal immigration laws. The lack of action by federal officials to fix the broken immigration system has simply shifted the burden onto local governments and school districts across the nation.
“Local taxpayers and communities should not be left alone in handling this responsibility,” Acquario said. “Congress must act, and if they can’t or won’t, then they need to expand federal Impact Aid to be available to the local jurisdictions that are bearing the brunt of their inaction.”