New York City deployed a new tactic Friday morning in an effort to counter Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s increasing flow of migrant buses: drowning the bus companies and their drivers in traffic violations.
Two more buses arrived at the city’s Port Authority Bus Terminal just after 6 a.m. Friday, adding to the more than 17,000 migrants Abbott has bused to New York in a sick political stunt.
This time, however, a half-dozen uniformed members of the NYPD Highway Patrol’s Motor Carrier Safety Unit were waiting.
The first bus to arrive was a blue Volvo bearing Mexican “Autotransporte Federal Turismo” license plates, owned and operated by a company out of Cedar Hill, Texas, called Autobuses La Sultana LC. A white document taped to the windshield read “TEXAS 144- HOUR PERMIT” and “VALID IN TEXAS ONLY” and was dated Oct. 6. The second bus had Texas plates and was marked “EJECTIVO TRAVEL.”
The driver of the first bus, 38-year-old Robert Reas, told The Daily Beast he lives in Monterrey, Mexico, where the bus is based. He said he began his journey by crossing the border at Laredo, Texas, then driving to El Paso, where he and his co-driver picked up three dozen migrants at “an institution,” including a half-dozen children. The migrants were from Venezuela and Ecuador, he said.
Reas said the bus stopped in Dallas and Nashville, letting out three or four people at each city, then continuing the 40-hour drive to New York. He said it was his second trip to New York with migrants.
Cops set out inspecting both buses with a fine-tooth comb, examining the tires and checking the air brakes, lights, and windshield wipers. They paid particular attention to a device that regulates tire air pressure.
They also inspected Reas’ license and his log book, in which he has to record information like when he rests and how long he drives at a time.
After the inspection, officers left both drivers with a handful of summonses; Reas counted a half-dozen. The Daily Beast has asked the NYPD for a run-down of the violations cited.
The new strategy is a variation on a crackdown on private sanitation trucks in 2018, which involved intensive inspections and summonsing.
Police sources told The Daily Beast the Motor Carrier Safety Unit usually inspects just 20 buses a year. A source said that the new tactic has originated from City Hall and is overseen by Timothy Pearson, a retired NYPD inspector who is now one of New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ top advisers.
The source said the city plans to continue the crackdown Monday through Friday next week, and possibly beyond.
As he waited to get the summonses, Reas was asked if he had heard of Adams. “I don’t know who is Eric Adams,” he said.
At about 7 a.m. the cops let him and the other bus continue on their way.
Adams declared a state of emergency over the migrant arrivals on Friday and directed relevant agencies to construct humanitarian relief centers. He called the influx a “crisis situation” that will cost the city $1 billion by the end of the year.
Friday’s episode was just the latest attempt by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to spend big bucks to shuttle newly arrived migrants to liberal-leaning cities far from the southern border. Another two busloads arrived in New York on Thursday, and one busload was dumped on the doorstep of Vice President Kamala Harris’ official residence in Washington, D.C., where more than 10,000 migrants have been shipped in recent months. DeSantis, meanwhile, is under investigation for chartering a plane to carry unsuspecting migrants from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard.
Conservative media outlets have often been tipped off about the arrivals while city officials have been kept in the dark, leading migrant advocates to slam the stunts as craven and cruel.