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Miami Commission urges feds to send money to help with influx of Cuban migrants


Miami commissioners urged the federal government Thursday to provide "financial aid" to local governments and community organizations bracing for the arrival of thousands of Cuban migrants currently stuck in Central America en route to the United States, and likely South Florida.

Some 8,000 Cubans hoping to make a circuitous route from Cuba through Central America to the U.S. in order to avoid the perilous journey across the Florida Straits have been jammed for months at the border between Costa Rica and Nicaragua. A plan was developed to transfer the migrants by plane to El Salvador, where they continue their trek toward Mexico, then the U.S. border. The flights to El Salvador began Tuesday night with 180 migrants aboard.

Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado has been warning for weeks about a potential strain in homeless and social service resources. He spoke Wednesday to the Miami-Dade School Board, which voted to ask for additional federal dollars to fund classroom services for migrant children.

The resolution approved unanimously Thursday by Miami Commssioners was brought by Commissioner Francis Suarez.