New Mexico governor requests delay of DHS plan to send more migrants to Albuquerque

SANTA FE, N.M. — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham sent a letter to U.S. Department of Homeland Security Sec. Alejando Mayorkas Tuesday, requesting the federal government delay planned or expanded efforts to transport migrants to New Mexico. She said the plan would dramatically affect the state’s capacity to provide ongoing humanitarian assistance to wildfire relief efforts.

The governor met with Mayorkas last month, where she requested additional wildfire disaster assistance from the federal government through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The governor’s request was recently granted by President Joe Biden, who announced that the federal government will cover 100% of costs for emergency protective work and debris removal under New Mexico’s existing wildfire disaster declaration.

“The existing emergency arising from these wildfires has severely taxed the capacity of our state to provide resources to non-New Mexicans. I cannot allow the governments and communities of the state of New Mexico to shoulder additional burdens falling squarely within the federal government’s purview,” the governor wrote.

Regarding the federal government’s plans to address the influx of migrants at the southern border, the governor added:

“I have serious concerns regarding the Department’s readiness to address the influx of individuals who are poised to enter New Mexico if further preparation is not undertaken. Public safety and health are paramount, and I do not believe that the Department can adequately address these health and safety concerns if existing limitations on migrant entry are lifted.”