NEW YORK CITY, NY - Last November, New York City announced it was facing a $7 billion budget deficit, according to the New York Times. As a result, Mayor Eric Adams announced in December that he was cutting 5% across the board.
According to Spectrum News, Adams said he wasn’t ruling out increasing revenue through tax increases. With all of that in mind, imagine how New Yorkers felt when they woke up last week to the news that Adams plans to hand out $53 million worth of pre-paid debit cards to illegal aliens.
The New York Post reported the city would begin the $53 million pilot program, which would be run by Mobility Capital Finance out of New Jersey and would provide illegals arriving at the Roosevelt Hotel with cash debit cards ostensibly to buy food, New York City Hall announced.
Officials announced the program will begin with a group of 500 families of illegals staying at the Roosevelt for “short-term” stays and will replace the current food service offered there. Officials say the cards can only be used at bodegas, grocery stores, supermarkets, and convenience stores.
City residents can have faith in the program, however. Officials say aliens who arrived in the US illegally will have to swear an affidavit that they will only use the funds for food and baby supplies or risk being removed from the program.
The Immediate Response Card program is similar to New York State’s food stamp program, SNAP, which provides low-income state residents with debit cards to cover the cost of meals and will use the same scale to provide funds to illegals.
The amount placed on the cards will vary depending on the family size and whether additional income is earned, according to the contract. For example, a family of four would receive nearly $1,000/month, or $35/day. Cards will be recharged every 28 days, officials said.
Last year, city residents were given similar cards to pay for holiday meals.
Mobility Capital CEO and founder Wole Coaxum expressed his company’s eagerness to partner with the Big Apple.
“MoCaFI [Mobility Capital Finance] looks forward to partnering with New York City to disburse funds for asylum seekers to purchase fresh, hot food,” said Coaxum. “MoCaFi’s goal is to expand access to financial resources for individuals excluded from banking, such as asylum seekers while helping the local economy.”
Should the program be successful, officials plan to expand it to all families of illegals staying in city hotels, which are believed to number around 15,000.
“Not only will this provide families with the ability to purchase fresh food for their culturally relevant diets and the baby supplies of their choosing, but the pilot program is expected to save New York City more than $7.2 million annually,” according to Adams spokesperson Kayla Mamelak.
The Post reports the city has been paying approximately $11 per meal to feed illegal aliens in city hotels, which has led to some complaints because instead of assimilating to the United States, the aliens from countries in Central and South America, Africa, and Europe seek to have their native cuisine.
Last month, a company called DocGo was found to have wasted thousands of dollars on uneaten meals. Some illegals complained they would rather cook in their hotel rooms rather than eat the meals provided by that company, which they called “bad.”
The new food program comes on the heels of a report in the Post announcing the city signed an additional $137 million in contracts with city hotels to house illegal aliens in some 750 hotel rooms.
New York is currently hosting over 66,000 illegals, with 1,500 arriving just last week. It is expected the influx of illegals will cost city taxpayers $10 billion through next year.