Migrant families
© J. Messerschmidt/NY PostMigrant families last week wait outside the Stewart Hotel on Seventh Avenue, which was full.
Mayor Eric Adams' administration has been forced to shell out $275 million in a contract with the Hotel Association of New York City to house at least 5,000 migrants as waves of asylum seekers continue to land in the city from the southern border, The Post has learned.

The "emergency" agreement between the city Department of Homeless Services and the Hotel Association puts the city on the hook for as much as $55,000 per migrant that lands in town.

The group represents nearly 300 city hotels with 80,000 rooms. Hotels also contracted with the city to house thousands of homeless New Yorkers during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mayor Eric Adams
© Charles Wenzelberg / NY PostMayor Eric Adamsโ€™ administration has inked a $275 million contract with the Hotel Association of NYC to shelter thousands of arriving migrants.
Hotel Association president Vijay Dandapani said Friday up to 55 mostly smaller hotels will house the migrants.

He said the Hotel Association put in a formal bid to provide shelter.

Dandapani said "entire hotels" will be set aside for migrants, while adding that the number of hotels and rooms set aside โ€” and the number of migrants to be sheltered โ€” remains "a moving target."

The hotel association head said the largest flagship hotels in Manhattan that cater to high end tourists will not likely participate in the shelter program at this point โ€” but that could change.

"At this point, no. But we don't know," Dandapani said.

He did say there will be some hotels in Manhattan as well as outer-boroughs that will take in the migrants.

One source called the contract a "win-win" for hotels that have high vacancy rates and for unionize workers who get paid without worrying if tourists come.
Hotel Wolcott
The Hotel Wolcott on West 31st Street in Manhattan currently houses migrants.
"Hotels get guaranteed income and no need to impress visitors," the source said.

The Hotel Wolcott on West 31st Street in Manhattan currently houses migrants.

City Hall and the Department of Homeless Service had no immediate comment.

In addition, the city entered into a separate $9.88 million contract with Community Mediation Services Inc. to provide a "sanctuary facility" for migrant families at 599 Utica Ave. in Brooklyn.

Adams has estimated that it will cost the city $1 billion or more to shelter and provide services to the 40,000 migrants who have flooded the city, and is seeking reimbursement from the federal and state governments to defray the fiscal burden on Big Apple coffers.

During a press conference Thursday, city Budget Director Jacques Jiha said the city had already spent $366 million to aid migrants since last year.

The Post reported last week that the city's Humanitarian Emergency Response and Relief Centers for migrants at four hotels โ€” including the Stewart Hotel on Seventh Avenue โ€” were full and turning asylum seekers away to other locations.

The mayor announced Friday that he put in an emergency aid request with Gov. Kathy Hochul and the state Legislature for immediate help to shelter 500 arriving asylum seekers this weekend.

He slammed other New York elected officials โ€” who've complained that he did not factor in the the cost of of aid to migrants in his $102.7 billion spending plan for fiscal year 2024 โ€” for not helping him seek assistance from Albany and Washington.

"Since last spring, the city has stepped up to welcome approximately 40,000 asylum seekers, providing them with shelter, food, and connections to a host of resources. We have opened 74 emergency shelters and four humanitarian relief centers at breakneck speed, and done this almost entirely on our own," Adams said in a statement.

Adams said the city was at a "breaking point."

The mayor said President Biden and Congress need to pitch in.

"The absence of sorely needed federal immigration reform should not mean that this humanitarian crisis falls only on the shoulders of cities. We need support and aid from our federal and state partners and look forward to working together to meet this crisis head-on," he said.