Author Archives: Leonard Sparks

Leonard Sparks

Leonard Sparks covers the City of Newburgh as a reporter for the Times Herald-Record newspaper.

Columbia University urban design students host public events in Newburgh

About 49 students in Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation are spending their fall semester researching the City of Newburgh and coming up with ideas for remaking the city for an urban design class. Those students make their second appearance in Newburgh on Saturday, when they will split into 12 groups and [...]

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Newburgh fires development director

James Slaughter was fired as the City of Newburgh’s director of business and industrial development on Thursday, ending a relatively short tenure in which he was passed over for the permanent city manager position after nearly a year as interim. Mayor Judy Kennedy and several members of the City Council confirmed the firing on Friday. [...]

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Newburgh to help cover shortfall for Hudson Valley Lighting project

Newburgh is going to commit $375,000 in general funds over the next two years to Hudson Valley Lighting’s new building on Scobie Drive. Owner David Littman has told city officials that the company has a $750,000 shortfall in funding for the $16 million project. Under a proposal discussed Thursday at the City Council’s work session, [...]

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Newburgh fire chief thinks banks may retreat from owning ‘zombie’ properties

There have only been a couple of cases, but Newburgh fire Chief Mike Vatter thinks the decision by some banks to end efforts to foreclose on properties in the city may be a sign that lenders will start retreating en masse from the headaches of owning so-called “zombie” houses. Newburgh has been a one of [...]

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Newburgh Loaves and Fishes launches appeal for Thanksgiving meals

Members of Newburgh Loaves and Fishes say the number of families receiving Thanksgiving meals from the organization grew from 100 in 1996 to over 1,300 in 2013. The group is predicting even more growth this year as it launches a fundraising campaign whose goal is to raise enough so 1,500 poor families will have the [...]

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Former Armory director named interim city planner

Deirdre Glenn was named interim planner for the City of Newburgh. Glenn is the former executive director of Habitat for Humanity and the Newburgh Armory Unity Center. She takes over for Ian McDougall, who stepped down as city planner.

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City officials attend ribbon-cutting for new Broadway barbershop

A handful of Newburgh city officials joined Eli LaFontant for ribbon-cutting ceremony outside Exclusive Cutz, his new barbershop at 223 Broadway. LaFontant described Exclusive Cutz as a traditional barbershop for men, women and children. In addition to specialty haircuts, the shop offers wash and sets, and permanents. It is open from 9 a.m. to 7 [...]

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Newburgh Rowing earns record number of medals

More turned out to be more for the Newburgh Rowing Club. It arrived at the 23rd annual Coastweeks Regatta in Mystic, Conn., with 55 athletes, the largest-ever group taken to the competition. It left Connecticut with 38 medals, a record for the club. “I could not be more proud of all of our athletes, each [...]

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Longtime admin asst., records officer given sendoffs

Ann Kuzmik was a reporter for the Mid Hudson Times when then-Newburgh City Manager Bill Ketcham convinced her to take an administrative job with the city, with a particular focus on media relations. One of her first assignments: A pig that had escaped from a petting zoo at a local festival. “It was my job [...]

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Council to vote Monday on contract for video streaming of its meetings

Newburgh’s City Council is moving toward making its twice-monthly legislative meetings and twice-monthly work sessions available via live streaming. Members of the Council will take up a resolution Monday authorizing a contract with Plano, Texas-based Swagit Productions LLC to broadcast live up to 50 meetings a year. The contract would pay up to $25,584 for [...]

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