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The original item was published from 5/8/2023 7:44:04 PM to 6/9/2023 12:00:01 AM.

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Posted on: May 8, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Neuhaus declares State of Emergency in response to NYC plan to send asylum seekers to Orange County

Orange County Seal

Goshen, N.Y. – Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus on Monday declared a State of Emergency for the County in response to New York City’s proposed plan to send asylum seekers to be temporarily housed at motels in the Town of Newburgh.

The Executive Order reads as follows:

WHEREAS, there is a national immigration crisis at the border between the United States and Mexico in that unprecedented and overwhelming numbers of migrants and asylum seekers are crossing over the open border of the United States; and

WHEREASthe Federal government has failed or refused to anticipate and react to the exigent and emergent circumstances, resulting in thousands of migrants and asylum seekers crossing  the U.S. border; and

WHEREAS, the Governor of Texas has seen fit to relocate thousands of migrants and asylum seekers crossing the Texas border to New York City, rather than address issues presented to its state and/or the Federal government; and

WHEREAS, the Mayor of New York City, Eric Adams has decried the fact that Governor Abbott has chosen to send such migrants and asylum seekers to those jurisdictions with minority mayors, he has in a similar fashion sent the same migrants and asylum seekers to targeted republican controlled counties, failing and refusing to send the same to democrat controlled counties; and

WHEREAS, the Mayor, although declaring New York City a sanctuary city, has failed and refused to adequately address the needs of such migrants and asylum seekers transferred to New York City, and decided to abdicate his duty and responsibility to those migrants and asylum seekers, transferring said duties and responsibilities to the County of Orange Government; and

WHEREAS, The City of New York is advertising and printing brochures for migrants and asylum seekers promoting long-term housing solutions in Orange County for at least four months and which is believed will be longer, if not permanent; and

WHEREAS, according to the promotional brochures by New York City, that migrants/asylum seekers will also receive medical care, food, laundry and other necessities, only initially to be funded by the City of New York; and

WHEREAS, Mayor Adams has represented to Orange County officials that approximately only 60 adult male migrant and/or asylum seekers will be transported to Orange County. However, Orange County has since learned that the Adams administration has also sought to house additional hundreds of migrants and/or asylum seekers at additional locations without notifying Orange County, and as a result Orange County can no longer rely on the representations of New York City officials; and 

WHEREAS, there is no reason to believe that these migrants or asylum seekers will leave Orange County after New York City ceases to pay for the housing and any services they are presently receiving in New York City, or that many thousands more migrants or asylum seekers will not be transported to Orange County; and

WHEREAS, there is reasonable apprehension of immediate danger of public emergency of potentially thousands of persons being transported to Orange County and that Orange County will be responsible for the public safety of these persons and all others effected in Orange County; and

WHEREAS, The County of Orange is not capable of receiving and sustaining such volume of migrants and asylum seekers that New York City intends to or hereafter  does transport  to the County,  whose presence will spike the number of people in need of government  services at all levels of government  in the County;  and

WHEREAS, there is no legal basis to provide adequate services to these migrants or asylum seekers by the County's Department of Social Services because of their age and immigration status; and

WHEREAS, The County of Orange anticipates potential civil disobedience and protesting on this issue both for and against the transportation of migrants/asylum seekers to Orange County; and

WHEREAS, local zoning codes do not allow the use of temporary residence hotels or other temporary residence   facilities   for use   as long-term   residential    housing   and therefore   New   York   City's transportation of migrants  and asylum seekers to Orange County for that purpose is illegal;  and

WHEREASthrough enforcement of local zoning codes, said migrants and/or asylum seekers will face refusal, or eviction from the illegal hotels and short-term residential facilities, resulting in large-scale homelessness for these migrants and asylum seekers; and

WHEREASas all temporary housing shelter beds in Orange County are  currently  at  maximum capacity  and cannot accommodate  additional homeless  individuals;  and

WHEREASthe locations for which Mayor Adams intends to transport said migrants and/or asylum seekers have inadequate infrastructure to meet the needs of said individuals, including but not limited to transportation to work, food, medical care, and pharmaceutical opportunities;  and

WHEREAS, that due to the above circumstances, I find reasonable apprehension of immediate danger thereof that public safety is imperiled thereby, for not only the migrant and asylum seekers, but also to the other affected residents of Orange County;  and

NOW, THEREFORE, I hereby declare, in order to protect life and property, or to bring the emergency situation under control, a State of Emergency in the County of Orange and make the following ORDER:

I Order that all hotels, motels and/or any facilities allowing short-term rentals do not accept said migrants and/or asylum seekers for housing within  Orange County.

This proclamation/declaration and the orders in relation thereto are pursuant to my powers  contained within the  Orange  County Charter  (Section 3.02-0)  and  Administrative  Code  (Section  3-2-q)  and Section 24 of the Executive  Law of the State of New York

I  FURTHER  FIND that this  State of Emergency does not in any way impact travel or County employees or County operations, is not weather related, and does not suspend County operations.  This Executive Order and all portions thereof shall take effect immediately, be filed and published as required by law, and individually expire as required by law.

Steven M. Neuhaus 

Orange County Executive