Three buses packed with migrants from Texas arrived in New York City early Wednesday — welcomed by supporters who thrust $20 bills in their hands.
The buses arrived at the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown, days after Mayor Eric Adams blasted Texas Gov. Greg Abbott as “anti-American” for relocating the asylum-seekers.
John Torres, who migrated from Colombia as a boy, took a four-hour bus ride from Maryland to New York to greet the new arrivals — with $200 in cash to give away.
“Because it’s the right thing to do,” Torres, 45, told The Post as to why he came. “It’s something that somebody would do for me if I’m in poverty, if I am starting out, someone would do that for me.”
Torres said he empathized with the migrants who arrived with few or no prospects for a job and no family or friends.
“You know, if I’m coming in a bus, if I’m scared, I don’t know where I am going, I don’t know what’s going on or nothing,” Torres said. “at least you know, if somebody gives me something for breakfast, at least I could start out that way, and then buy me a shirt, buy me clothes and then, I don’t know … figure it out from there.”
One migrant who got off at Port Authority told The Post he started his trek to America from Venezuela on July 8.
Jairo Gamardo said he crossed into the US via Texas and then spent two days being processed by immigration officials before he was taken to a church in a city where he got onto a bus that headed directly for the Big Apple – stopping only for bathroom breaks.
Gamardo said the government-funded trip was provided to him and other migrants hailing from Texas at no cost. He said he previously worked for the military in Venezuela and was seeking political asylum in the United States.
“It’s a beautiful city,” Gamardo said when asked why he wanted to come to New York.
Gamardo, who doesn’t know anyone in the Big Apple, traveled alone and is now searching for work and better days ahead, he said.
A City Hall official said Tuesday at least three more buses carrying migrants from Texas would arrive in the Big Apple by Wednesday and keep showing up “basically daily.”
Abbott hired a charter bus company to send the migrants across the country, but the company signed a non-disclosure agreement preventing the city from obtaining details on its itineraries, Immigrant Affairs Commissioner Manuel Castro told reporters Tuesday.
Some 45 migrants got off a bus that arrived in the city on Friday, as Abbott said he planned to continue the program indefinitely, claiming New York City is the “ideal destination” for the migrants due to its services for homeless people.
Adams said Sunday that only 14 migrants had gotten off the bus that officials were “led to believe” held about 40 people. It’s unclear what happened to the others, but Adams said Monday some were sent to “new locations.”
Abbott began relocating migrants to Washington, DC, in April in response to what he calls President Biden’s “open border policies.” City Hall officials estimate around 4,000 migrants in all have arrived in recent weeks.
Torres said he believed Abbott was “trying to do the best he can” by busing the migrants to New York, a sanctuary city.
“But there’s only so many people you can help,” Torres said. “There are thousands of people every day, so I mean I respect his opinion but I think you gotta do some reform in each state to help out.”