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Taxes: Tax rates have increased every year. Fact is, wards 1&2 have seen a decrease in their assessment values so they don’t see it (that’s where the revival is focused). Yet. The city’s century old infrastructure dragon is starting to awaken so the math is no longer in favor of depressing values to appease the status. It’s not a population quantity issue but rather a qualitative one.
Crime: It’s an issue. I live on the north end and have been robbed once in the last five years (I live next to a vacant house). I walk the streets regularly, often down to the lower wards, and have never been accosted. That said, I’m not sheep.The city has more than enough popo (cali term?). The locals need to take their streets back, which relates back to the “qualitative” issue. As ‘police and fire’ consume the majority of the city’s revenues, taxes will go up to pay for the infrastructure issues.
Gubberment ;): The new city manager is meeting some resistance from the status. He’s guilty of being objective in his actions and that’s dangerous to a certain tribe. He knows the deal and does a good job of remaining neutral regarding politics. The other city staff are equally as sharp. The DPW needs more resources, again, which relates to the “qualitative” issue and the allocation of funds. As per the politicos, they matter to the degree of shaping perceptions. Unfortunately the media gives them the attention. Look past that nonsense.
Biz: I suggest the City’s website for starters and follow the links. As well, check out the city council work sessions (not the meetings,they’re ‘filtered’) to get a feel for the dynamics between the politics and the management of the city.
Gay community: I’m not sure what you mean by feeling exclusive. Newburgh has always been…’stand offish’ regarding any demographic group. If you don’t require a “safe space” to retreat to you should feel comfortable.
-Aside from its architecture, the ‘Burgh isn’t SF by any stretch of the imagination.
I moved up from Brooklyn in ’71 and the ‘Burgh isn’t that either, now or then.