New York City is planning to reduce the overtime budget for four uniformed agencies, including the New York Police Department (NYPD), in order to cover the costs of the city’s migrant crisis.
At present, the NYPD is experiencing a shortage of staff.
In a memo sent over the weekend, Jacques Jiha, commissioner of the NYC Dept. of Finance, informed the NYPD, as well as the corrections, fire, and sanitation agencies, of the need to implement an overtime reduction initiative. The memo was obtained by the New York Post and Politico.
Jiha stated in the memo, “The mayor will issue a directive to implement an overtime reduction initiative for our city’s four uniformed agencies (NYPD, FDNY, DOC/DSNY). These agencies must submit a plan to reduce year-to-year OT spending.”
Additionally, the agencies are required to submit monthly reports to Mayor Eric Adams’ office to track their progress in meeting the overtime reduction target.
This directive comes after Adams warned that the influx of asylum seekers into the city could “destroy New York City.” Adams reiterated this sentiment in an interview, stating that NYC is facing a “financial tsunami.”
Adams estimates that the costs associated with the migrant crisis could reach $12 billion over the next three years. He stated that since April 2022, 110,000 asylum seekers have arrived in NYC, creating a $12 billion budget deficit.
In order to offset these costs, all NYC agencies are required to make 5% budget cuts, which may increase to 15% in the future. However, even with a 15% budget cut, Jiha mentioned in the memo that it would only cover two-thirds of the projected asylum costs.
The head of NYC’s largest police union expressed concerns about reducing overtime, stating that it is “impossible” for the NYPD to do so without addressing its staffing shortage. Patrick Hendry, head of the Police Benevolent Association, stated, “If City Hall wants to save money without jeopardizing public safety, it needs to invest in keeping experienced cops on the job.”
However, Mayor Adams is faced with a difficult situation. Jiha noted in the memo that federal and state assistance for the city’s crisis has been “grossly inadequate.”
Mark Swanson ✉
Mark Swanson, a Newsmax writer and editor, has nearly three decades of experience covering news, culture, and politics.
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