CARMEL- Putnam County Executive Kevin Byrne declared a state of emergency and signed three executive orders, similar to those issued in Rockland, Orange, and Sullivan counties in response to New York City sending asylum seekers to house in Hudson Valley hotels.
“The purpose of these executive orders is to give the county the ability to preserve residents’ rights, protect their well-being, and enforce county established laws and codes, in the wake of what has clearly become a disorganized, muddy operation by New York City officials,” said Byrne.
Byrne was critical of New York City Mayor Eric Adams for what he said was a lack of proper coordination with local municipalities. “New York City continues to rely on its poorly planned operations which set the stage to overburden and place significant hardship on communities in the Hudson Valley and further upstate,” said Byrne.
The county executive sent a letter to all hotels, motels, and temporary residencies in Putnam County asking for their cooperation and transparency in communicating if they have received an inquiry from New York City officials or their representatives regarding rooms for migrants.
He also issued three executive orders. The first two orders afford the county the flexibility to re-direct county resources to enforce sanitary code, as well as directs hotels, motels and those with temporary residency permits not to accept migrants and asylum seekers from New York City essentially transforming them into homeless shelters absent a shared services agreement with Putnam. The third order defines the county as a “rule of law” jurisdiction and not a “sanctuary” county. It also confirms the county’s law enforcement relationship with federal immigration enforcement agencies.
“We’ve put an incredible amount of thought into this decision and considering numerous internal reports of the city’s lack of transparency and cooperation with local municipalities, we will not wait any longer to act,” said Byrne.