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Major political divide in Albany over migrant policies as crisis looms

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

New York State’s response to the rising influx of migrants is underscoring the country’s political divide.

On one hand, Democratic lawmakers have supported Governor Kathy Hochul’s initiative to expedite work permits for asylum seekers, following a call by state Assemblywoman Pat Fahy and many of her colleagues urging President Biden to take action.


Fahy believes that granting work permits earlier could help fill the thousands of open entry-level positions and reduce resistance to welcoming migrants in communities outside New York City.

On the other hand, Republicans are challenging plans to relocate migrants to upstate areas and potentially utilize State University of New York campuses for temporary housing.

While Governor Hochul is considering all state-owned properties, including former psychiatric centers, Republican Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt labels this as impractical with the impending return of college students in August. Ortt proposes housing migrants in New York City’s convention centers and criticizes the federal government’s border policy for placing the burden on states to address the migrant crisis.



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