City Council Unanimously Approves Land Bank Resolution

For Immediate Release- March 13, 2012 

Newburgh, NY.—The Newburgh City Council unanimously approved a resolution for the creation of the Newburgh Community Land Bank at the Council meeting on March 12, 2012, the final step before submitting an application to the New York State Economic Development Council.

“Vacant and abandoned property has been a problem in our community for a long time, this application presents a new strategy towards a promising solution” commented Mike Vatter City of Newburgh Fire Chief, Code Enforcement Officer and Land Bank Board Chairman.  “I am encouraged that the City of Newburgh will have the opportunity to be one of the first Land Banks in the State.”

Added City Council Member and NCLB Board Member Curlie Dillard: “this is a great first step forward for Newburgh. I am very excited to be working on this project. I applaud the commitment to our community of the Newburgh Community Land Bank Board of Directors and I look forward to hearing ‘yes’ from the state.” Council Member Dillard was pleased that the Council voted 5-0 in support of the resolution.

The Newburgh Community Land Bank will form as a 501 ( c ) 3 non-for-profit organization that is committed to transparent, open, citizen-focused development efforts. The organization will be run by eleven board members representing residents, businesses and local government:  Michael J. Vatter, Esq., Chair, Fire Chief, City of Newburgh, Fred Visconti, Vice Chair, Visconti Limousine, Cathleen Kenny, Treasurer, Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer Mount Saint Mary College, Lisa Daily, Secretary, Chairperson City of Newburgh Planning Board House of Refuge International Ministries, Inc., Allan E. Atzrott, Chief Executive Officer, St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital, The Hon. Curlie Dillard, Councilman, City of Newburgh, Richard F. Herbek, City Manager, City of Newburgh, Jenny Loeb, Mid-Hudson Organizer, Community Voices Heard, David Potack, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Unitex, Kevin White, President, Newburgh Performing Arts Academy, Bishop Jeffrey Woody, House of Refuge International Ministries, Inc.

In order to gain understanding about the questions and concerns people may have about the Land Bank, the Board of Directors created a survey for individuals to take. Visit or stop by the Fire Department to pick up a copy. All are encouraged to voice questions, concerns and comments by the April 15, 2012 deadline.

New York State Economic Development Council will authorize five land banks initially in the round one request for applications due on March 30, 2012.

Chief Vatter concluded his comments with “the Newburgh Community Land Bank is committed to working with the residents to revitalize and reinvigorate the community.”
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