Officials confirm federal government is looking to house illegal immigrants in WNY

Updated: 06/22/2014 11:13 PM
Created: 06/22/2014 7:02 PM WHEC.com

Officials confirm that the Department of Health and Human Services is looking to house illegal, immigrant children in WNY.

News10NBC is told that the Lexington Commerce Center in Greece is one of those housing options. The other is outside of Buffalo at Byblos Niagara Resort and Spa on Grand Island. The details are still limited at this time, but officials say federal agents are looking to house thousands of unaccompanied, immigrant children around the country.

A representative from Senator Chuck Schumer’s office says it is unclear if the federal agents have been to the Lexington Commerce Center, but agents did stop by the resort on Grand Island.

Greece Town Supervisor Bill Reilich says he hasn’t heard anything about the plan, but his building inspector tells him that the Commerce Center is 95% occupied.

A call to the development company that owns the Commerce Center has not yet been returned.

Some people in the Greece area are worried about the possibility of illegal immigrants being housed there, and who’s going to pay for it?

“Where is all the money coming from? We pay enough in taxes in our local area. Why should we be paying more out to other children, from other countries, when we can’t even support our own in the local area?” said Randy Nundy, a concerned resident.

It’s a concern being echoed by people all across Greece after learning the Commerce Center on Lexington Avenue could soon be home to hundreds of immigrant children.

“Our tax dollars and our money should stay here locally. We don’t even have enough money to help ourselves,” said Michael Dadson, a resident.

Western New York isn’t the first place to be considered. The Obama Administration was also planning to house immigrants at a nonfunctional college in Virginia. They had to pull back after fierce opposition from residents.

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