Trump Tower security getting better every day, but a lot up in the air, NYPD says

Securing Trump Tower is getting easier, NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill said.

Police Commissioner James O’Neill said security planning at Trump Tower is getting easier with time as the police department continues to execute its pre-inauguration plan.

But O’Neill said a lot is up in the air.

“That’s evolving, it’s getting better every day,” he said, speaking at an unrelated news conference in Brooklyn. “Of course, it’s still a congested area. Going forward, we’re still working with the Secret Service to work out a long-term plan.”

Future first lady Melania Trump has said she wants to stay in the midtown apartment building after President-elect Donald Trump assumes office, and Trump has said he would like to return to the city on weekends.

Last week, Mayor Bill de Blasio requested $35 million in federal reimbursements for the NYPD’s role in securing the area around Trump Tower between Nov. 8 and Jan. 20 in a letter to President Barack Obama’s administration. House Republicans set aside $7 million for the city to help pay the costs of protecting the midtown building.

“Keep in mind, whether he’s here or not, there still has to be a plan to help with traffic because it’s an iconic building,” O’Neill said, adding that whether Trump is in the city or not, “it’s still a tremendous amount of personnel, it’s a tremendous cost to the city, and we’re taking resources from throughout the city to send them over.”

Still, O’Neill said, the city has to implement “pretty extensive” security plans when a sitting president decides to visit the city — even when it’s just a temporary stay.

“If he’s here, the cost will probably go up,” he said.

Alison Fox