🔴 South Jersey politicians called upon Gov. Phil Murphy to talk to the White House

🔴 Murphy said on his News 12 program he is against the plan

🔴 Egg Harbor Township where the airport is located can't handle the influx


ATLANTIC CITY — Atlantic County politicians, both Democrat and Republican, came together Friday to oppose relocating migrants from New York City to Atlantic City International Airport.

President Joe Biden is proposing to send hundreds, perhaps thousands, of migrants from New York City to 11 facilities around the area including Atlantic City International Airport, according to a report by Bloomberg. New York Mayor Eric Adams has been at odds with Gov. Kathy Hochul over moving some of the unauthorized immigrants into the state.

More than 200 makeshift shelters over the past 18 months have been created in the five boroughs in facilities ranging from hotels to state owned facilities. Attempts to move them to the immediate counties around New York City have met with pushback from Hochul and local officials.

Gov. Murphy reaction to welcoming migrants to New Jersey

Murphy has not issued a formal statement about the matter. During his monthly program on News 12 on Thursday he said that New Jersey can’t handle such a program.

“I don’t see any scenario where we’re going to be able to take in a program in Atlantic City or frankly elsewhere in the state,” Murphy said, according to Politico’s report about his monthly News 12 program.  Murphy said he has not had any conversation with the White House abNout the proposal.

Mayor Marty Small hosted the event at Atlantic City's City Hall and clarified that the airport is in Egg Harbor Township, not his city.

"It's 10 miles from the great city of Atlantic City," Small said. "We're standing as a united front for the possibility of the migrants going to Egg Harbor Township. I want us all to keep up that same energy because in my experience as mayor, Atlantic City has been the perennial dumping ground."

Map shows Atlantic City and Egg Harbor Township
Map shows Atlantic City and Egg Harbor Township (Canva)

No capacity in Egg Harbor Township

Mayor Laura Frommer said that her township with a population of 50,000 is even less equipped to handle the 60,000 who could be housed at the National Guard armory at the airport.

"Egg Harbor Township does not have the capacity to take care of this. We don't have the school room. We don't have the roads. We don't have an infrastructure. We don't have a social services program that can handle this," Frommer said.

Several other area politicians spoke out against the plan and called upon support from Gov. Phil Murphy to lead the opposition to the proposal.


Sign at Atlantic City International Airport
Sign at Atlantic City International Airport (Bud McCormick)

Criminals will come, lawmaker warns

U.S. Rep. Jeff Van Drew, R-N.J. 2nd District, offered a "guarantee" that some of those who would be brought to the airport would be criminals.  He criticized Murphy for making New Jersey an attractive destination for unauthorized immigrants.

"We have money allocated for defense funds that will actually go to help illegals stay where they are so they won't be sent back. We have money allocated by this state to help them with a myriad of things including cell phones, including nourishment, including legal defense. How about taking care of our people," Van Drew said.

The former dentist was asked why he voted against funding for the border wall along the Mexican border during the Trump administration. He said it was part of an omnibus National Defense bill that included unrelated items he did not support such as "drag queen ambassadors," "social justice" and "transgender studies."

Van Drew said that he has not seen the proposal reported by Bloomberg but has heard the details from "whistleblowers" who have read it.

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