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Texas busing company to halt migrant transports to New York City

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(The Center Square) — A Texas-based busing company says it will halt relocations of migrants from the southern border to New York City in response to a lawsuit challenging the practice.

Roadrunner Charters Inc. is one of 17 defendants in a $700 million lawsuit filed by Mayor Eric Adams, alleging the bus companies are illegally finding their way around an executive order restricting the relocations.

A stipulation agreement signed by the company declares that it will “refrain forthwith from transporting individuals known as migrants from Texas to New York City, and/or from Texas to the vicinity of New York City.”

“However, the stipulation, and its terms and conditions, shall not be used as evidence for any other purpose in this litigation and/or against the parties to support the underlying factual or legal claims or defenses in this matter by any party to the Stipulation or by any third party,” the document, filed in state Supreme Court, declares.

Adams responded by saying that he was “pleased” that the company had agreed to stop bussing migrants to New York City, which he called an attempt to “overwhelm our shelter system.”

“New York City continues to do our part as we lead the nation in managing this national humanitarian crisis, but reckless political games from the state of Texas will not be tolerated,” Adams, a Democrat, said in a statement.

The mayor also urged other bus companies to follow Roadrunner’s lead in suspending the migrant relocations and “Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s scheme to transport tens of thousands of migrants” to the Big Apple.

New York City has seen an influx of more than 180,000 migrants over the past year amid a surge of immigration along the U.S.-Mexico border, with about 65,000 migrants under the city’s care. Adams estimated the costs of caring for migrants to be more than $10 billion over the next several years.

Gov. Abbott and other Republican leaders in border states have been critical of the Biden administration’s response to the surge. They’ve been busing groups of migrants to Democratic strongholds in New York, Chicago and other destinations with “sanctuary” policies.

Adams signed an executive order requiring charter bus operators to give city officials at least 32 hours advance notice before arriving and limiting drop-off times. But Adams accused bus operators of exploiting a “loophole in the system” to help the migrants reach their final destination, New York City. He filed a lawsuit against Roadrunner and 16 other defendants, accusing them of violating the law.

New York is the only major U.S. city that has a right-to-shelter law, which Republicans and other critics say is drawing more migrants to the city.

Earlier this week, the Adams administration announced that it would limit stays in the city’s emergency housing system to no more than 30 days under an agreement with homeless advocates settling pending litigation.

Young adults under the age of 23 will get 60 days to stay in city-run shelters before reaching a move-out deadline. But the agreement also upholds the city’s right-to-shelter law.