Donald Trump assumed office just shy of two weeks ago.
While the spotlight has mostly been on the president’s controversial executive orders and public backlash, there’s something else that managed to creep its way front and centre: His security costs.
According to information obtained by CBS2, it costs New York $500,000 to protect the Trump family’s primary residence, Trump Tower, when the president is in town.
During the weeks leading up to, and on the day of, the inauguration, the bill to protect Trump and the building came to a whopping $35 million.
Thirty. Five. Million.
In December, New York City formally asked the federal government to reimburse it for the cost of the enormous security operation around Trump Tower from November 8 to January 20 – the day of Donald Trump’s inauguration.
The letter sent by mayor Bill de Blasio stated that municipal or state resources should ‘not be subsidizing the President-Elect’s decision to maintain multiple permanent residences’, and therefore request that New York City and the state ‘refuse to pay additional security costs associated with maintaining a second residence at Trump Tower once the President-Elect is inaugurated’, the Independent reported.
But the Trump family may still decide to use the tower as a second home. Or, in the case of wife Melania and son Barron, a primary home.
Published reports suggested Trump’s wife and son were considering holding off on the D.C. move indefinitely, and would instead reside at Trump Tower – doubling security costs.
While the bill would be somewhat less than the president’s, sources told CBS2 that the cost of protecting Melania and Barron would still be significant ‘because there are still two people to protect’.
“We know there will be two distinct per day costs. One when President Trump is in New York City, and one when he is not. We are currently determining what those look like,” spokesperson for Mayor de Blasio, Freddi Goldstein, said.
While those figures would no doubt be extreme, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, senior adviser to the First Lady, today told ABC News that Melania is to leave her Trump Tower penthouse and move to Washington with the couple’s 10-year-old son at the end of the school year.
Meaning, security at Trump Tower should remain at $500,000 per day only while Trump is in town.
In the meantime, City Hall said it’s still working with the Congressional delegation to get reimbursed for what it cost to protect the Trumps before the inauguration.
Year-round protection could cost as much as $180 million.