Heard Around Town

How much does it cost to run New York City for one day?

Putting city costs into perspective.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams at Summer Streets in East Harlem.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams at Summer Streets in East Harlem. Caroline Rubinstein-Willis/Mayoral Photography Offices

New Yorkers have heard a lot lately about how much money city leaders are spending providing shelter and other services to newly arrived migrants – in short, a lot – but what did an average day look like before the surge of new arrivals? 

In response to a request from City Council Finance Committee Chair Justin Brannan, the New York City Independent Budget Office calculated that city spending averaged about $300 million daily during fiscal year 2022. The largest slice of that figure, $89.8 million, went toward education. The second most at $46.2 million? Social services, about two thirds of which was for the Department of Social Services. Spending for the New York City Police Department meanwhile rolled in at about $16.2 million a day. 

To put the $300 million in perspective with the migrant crisis, New York City Mayor Eric Adams said the city is spending an average of $9.8 million a day – and almost $300 million a month – providing shelter, food, medical care and social services to the city’s newest arrivals as of Aug. 9.