Bayside motel among those reportedly being used to house migrants in NYC

Photo by Ethan Marshall

Bayside’s Anchor Inn is reportedly among the motels in New York City currently being used to house migrants and Queens Councilwoman Vickie Paladino released a statement criticizing the arrangement.

Paladino, on April 14, said her office did not get word about this happening until less than eight hours before the migrants arrived. She criticized Mayor Eric Adams’ office for a lack of transparency and community input in this process.

Paladino said some of her biggest concerns over the migrants occupying the motel were a potential lack of resources and transportation in the neighborhood, as well as the residential nature of the community.

“Our city is slashing its budget to accommodate a migrant influx that should never have happened in the first place and New Yorkers everywhere are going to suffer for it,” Paladino said. “My sympathies of course go out to the migrants who are here to seek a better life as so many others have before them, but nobody benefits from our current system of chaos, crisis and disorder. Our neighborhoods deserve better than this and those who seek to immigrate to the United States deserve an orderly and equitable process.”

According to Paladino, she was originally told that the motel, located at at 215-34 Northern Blvd., would be used to house homeless New York City residents. She said that City Hall told her at the last minute the motel would instead house migrants. Paladino stated that she intends to closely monitor the situation in the coming days.

Paladino tweeted that the Anchor Inn is expected to be contracted as an emergency shelter for migrants for six to nine months. She also claimed that the contract for the motel to house the migrants was $300,000 per month of taxpayer dollars.

While Paladino has maintained her opposition to the motel being used to house migrants, she did praise the staff on site.

“I have been very impressed with the onsite staff from DHS and H.E.L.P.,” Paladino tweeted. “They are knowledgeable, courteous and have been extremely helpful. They are conscientious of the neighborhood and sensitive to the needs of this district. While I continue to strongly oppose this location as completely inappropriate, I feel much better after having met and interacted with this staff. We could not have asked for a better group to manage the facility.”

Paladino had previously praised Mayor Adams last summer for deciding to renege on housing migrants shipped up from Texas at a College Point hotel. That decision by Adams came days after Paladino issued a statement criticizing his initial decision.

City Hall emphasized the importance of the city being able to take care of the migrants being brought here from the southern border. They have partnered with several organizations, businesses and lawmakers to help arrange for these people to have a place to stay rather than force them onto the streets.

Newly arrived migrants peer through a bus window at Port Authority in October 2022. (Photo by Dean Moses)

“It will take all of us to respond to this unprecedented influx of asylum seekers that New York City has seen since last year,” a City Hall spokesperson told QNS. “Our administration, New Yorkers from every borough, community organizations and our faith partners have all stepped up to the challenge, but as we’ve said for months, we’re in dire need of additional support from our state and federal partners to address this national crisis. We are committed to working with local elected officials and keeping them informed about new emergency shelters that we must open in an effort to comply with the law and ensure we do not allow families to sleep on the street.”

Mayor Adams recently called upon the White House to assist with the influx of migrants into New York City. He asked them to pursue pathways for granting work authorizations to the over 55,000 recently arrived migrants who are seeking to work in the city.

When contacted for comment by QNS, the operator of the Anchor Inn motel refused to provide any information on the topic of housing migrants. The manager claimed not to know anything about the matter.

The Anchor Inn had once housed multiple sex offenders a few years ago. Back in 2019, eight sex offenders residing at the motel were removed from the site by the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development.