To address the illegal immigration crisis facing New York City, Mayor Eric Adams announced Thursday that his administration would have to make major cuts to the NYPD and Education Department budgets.
“No city should be left to handle a national humanitarian crisis largely on its own, and without the significant and timely support we need from Washington, D.C., today’s budget will be only the beginning,” he said.
The budget cuts would bring the number of Police Department officers below 30,000 for the first time since the 1980s, slash the Education Department budget by $1 billion over two years and delay the rollout of composting in the Bronx and Staten Island — one of the mayor’s signature initiatives to address rats and climate change. The cuts would also weaken two popular programs: summer school and universal prekindergarten. […]
Mr. Adams said that the cost of the migrant crisis was growing and expected to cost nearly $11 billion over two years and that next year’s budget had a major $7 billion gap. The cuts go into effect immediately, city officials said, and the mayor can implement hiring freezes on his own.
The City Council has a role in approving certain budget changes, including when funding is shifted among agencies or increased. It can approve budget modifications or vote them down. But the Council is more likely to fight the mayor’s cuts by negotiating the budget for the next fiscal year, which is due in June and requires Council approval. (The New York Times)
The announcement came after the Democrat warned Tuesday how “painful” the budget cuts would be for New Yorkers.
“In all my time in government, this is probably one of the most painful exercises I’ve gone through,” he said.
New Yorkers blasted the cuts.
“Mayor Adams’s unnecessary, dangerous and draconian budget cuts will only worsen New York’s affordability crisis and delay our city’s economic recovery by cutting funding for the schools, child care, food assistance and more that help New Yorkers live and raise families in this city,” Lincoln Restler, a chair of the City Council’s progressive caucus, told the Times.
Police union president, Patrick Hendry, called the cuts a “disaster for every New Yorker who cares about safe streets.”
And the city comptroller Brad Lander blasted Adams for continuing to suggest “that asylum seekers are the reason for imposing severe cuts when they are only contributing to a portion of these budget gaps, much of which already existed.”