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Elected officials call on advocates to rally until migrant deal at Floyd Bennett Park is suspended

City Council Member Joann Ariola and state Assembly Member Jaime WIlliams have voiced opposition over the plan and called on constituents to rally.

News 12 Staff and Julio Avila

Oct 23, 2023, 11:22 AM

Updated 244 days ago

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City Council Member Joann Ariola and state Assembly Member Jaime WIlliams are calling on constituents to continue rallying against the plan to bring more than 2,000 asylum seekers to Floyd Bennett Field. Their latest move involves a continuous rally where they will rally each day in hopes of the plan being suspended.
This follows a series of rallies and outcries to the city, state and federal governments over the plan. A Google document, shared by Ariola’s office, allows those interested to fill out ahead of the rallies. It also includes days and times constituents can select that work best for them.
The two elected officials and constituents have voiced opposition over the plan. Safety concerns, flooding concerns, federal laws claiming illegality over building housing on federal lands, which Floyd Bennett Field is designate, and lack of nearby available resources such as food, jobs and transportation are among the issues.
Gov. Kathy Hochul introduced the plan, which had been in negotiations with the federal government for months. An agreement was reached in September between the city and federal government to use the land for housing migrants. The state said it would pay for the expenses related to the efforts.
Ariola, Williams, and State Assemblymember Stacey Pheffer Amato filed a lawsuit in September against the city and state over the agreement. The lawsuit was filed in state court, but was moved up to the federal courts, only to be deemed the case should be tried in state court.
Ariola and Williams also testified in front of the congressional House Committee on Natural Resources, which oversees federal lands, to plead for the agreement’s suspension.
New York Congressional Rep. Nicole Malliotakis also introduced legislation to ban the use of federal lands and property to house incoming asylum seekers. Legislative tracking shows the bill is set to have a subcommittee discussion on Oct. 19.
The rally is scheduled to start Monday afternoon, according to Ariola’s office, at the main entrance of Floyd Bennett Park on Flatbush Avenue.


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