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CBS 2 Investigators: Chicago spent $138M so far on newly-arrived migrants

City of Chicago has paid out $138 million in support of migrant crisis
City of Chicago has paid out $138 million in support of migrant crisis 01:38

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The CBS 2 Investigators obtained records that show the City of Chicago has paid out $138 million so far to vendors for the caring of migrants.

As CBS 2's Sabrina Franza reported, the figure covers the time period from October of last year to the present. The purpose was all to help support new arrivals making their way to Chicago. For perspective, $138 million is more money than was budgeted to fund the Chicago Public Library in 2024.

The largest recipient of the money was Favorite Healthcare Staffing – a health care staffing firm. The firm received $93 million – 68 percent of the total sum.

Equitable Social Solutions, a company that works in homelessness prevention and housing support, got $19 million.

The family-owned foodservice company Open Kitchens got $15 million.

The city public data portal suggests that between September and the present, the administration of Mayor Brandon Johnson paid $53.9 million to support the crisis. But in a trip to Washington, D.C. back in November, Mayor Johnson told reporters the city was spending $40 million a month.

"The $40 million that it's costing the City of Chicago a month to provide care for these individuals who are seeking asylum – that is not sustainable," Mayor Johnson said in Washington on Nov. 2.

We are still working to find out any other costs the city has paid out in support of the migrant crisis. Wed do know some of the funding for the vendors came from the Federal Emergency Management Administration – and some came in the form of grant money from the State of Illinois.

Also of interest is the Brighton Park site at 38th Street and California Avenue, which was going to be a winterized tent camp for migrants. The City of Chicago paid more than $985,000 for the camp to be built before it was shut down by Governor JB Pritzker's office because of contamination concerns with the land. Construction of the camp was already in progress when that happened.

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