Letter: What else has been spent?

Dear Editor,

Currently noted for the previous nine months, Governor Hochul has been sending state taxpayer dollars to an undisclosed number of illegal immigrants in New York City. What is known is the enumerated count of illegals in NYC is currently 70,000 and predicted to be 90,000 by March 2025.  

Stated by the Governor, the federal government prohibits “asylum seekers” from collecting Federal benefits or subsidies. Hence, our Democrat Governor decided to expand the state to do local-funded “safety net assistance” programs to include “applicants for asylum” and applicants for “temporary protected status”. 

The current state budget allocated $26 million state tax dollars for NYC, but recently increased the current budget to $67 million for this fiscal year based on the reality of how many are being handed reloadable debit cards. 

These State funds are exclusive of what NYC taxpayers pay in taxes for local services. The insult to injury is that we, here in Tioga County, also have to pay, in part, via our County taxes to implement, and now pay as a county, for Governor Hochul’s State entitlement program for illegal immigrants.

The connection can be made when Tioga County’s share of Medicaid / Social Services are paid with local county taxes (an Unfunded State Mandate) and when we learned in January that Governor Hochul withheld the Federal Medicaid Funds, which is to be apportioned to offset the county’s expenditures. The County was informed about the withholding of Federal funds after they had approved appropriations and tax rates for 2024.  

Governor Hochul had no qualms retaining her budget lines for NY State’s expenditures; funding that Tioga County will need to make up with local tax collections in 2025. There may even be a second year of withheld Medicaid Federal Funds based on decisions she has enacted to support illegal immigrants.

What other funds has Hochul appropriated, or plans on re-appropriating in 2025 to augment expanded government programs in order to send funds to be placed in cash reloadable debit cards for an untold number of illegal immigrants. The reality is that we still have to pick up the cost of illegals, via County taxes. 

Even though we are not a quarter of the way into our County Fiscal year, next year we will be paying for this year’s reduced re-appropriated Federal Funds, and we will also be augmenting the state with our State Tax Revenue to supplement Albany’s declaration to support illegal immigrants.  

Again, we need to thank our County Chair, Martha Sauerbrey, who posts weekly a legal “Emergency Order” as a ‘Save Harmless’ Act.


Florence Alpert

Candor, N.Y.

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