Newburgh Earns Another Dubious Distinction. But Is It Really Fair?
Newburgh takes it's share of flack, but that doesn't stop those who have spent their whole lives in the area from defending their hometown.
Now it looks like a new study has once again cast Newburgh in a poor light. But is it all that bad, especially when compared to some other towns across the country? Ever been to Port Arthur, Texas or Lawton, Oklahoma? The City of Newburgh has it's obvious problems, but what about the Town of Newburgh, or other surrounding areas?
The website WalletHub recently rated America's best and worst small towns. They compared 1,268 small cities and towns ranging in population from 25,000 to100,000, using data from five major categories; Affordability, Economic Health, Education & Health, Quality of Life, and Safety.
The data collected from the categories was then evaluated using forty relevant metrics. See the FULL list HERE.
Basically, the scores were averaged up, and the higher percentile your town fell under, the better. Well, looks like Newburgh didn't do so well. In fact, they finished near the bottom with an overall score of 45.66. That places them at 4%, right under Spring Valley in Rockland.
According to the numbers, Newburgh finished nearly dead last when it came to affordability and economic growth. On the bright side, however, it finished 168th out of 1,268 in overall quality of life. Compare that to the study's top city; Leawood, Kansas...who was 648th for quality of life.
What hurts places like Newburgh (or Poughkeepsie, who only scored in the 29 percentile in WalletHub's study) is the fact that there's an extremely high cost of living in a stagnate job market. And while both cities have their problems, would you ever compare them to the poorest parts of the American South, or Appalachia (where there are some areas where the life expectancy is actually going down)?
Places like Leawood, KS or West Fargo, North Dakota may have scored high, but that's mainly because there's not much crime in such small, secluded areas, and that it's very cheap to live. Aside from that you've still got to deal with brutal winters and the boredom from being stuck in the middle of nowhere.
If Newburgh, Poughkeepsie, or some other Hudson Valley towns are getting you down, you can always go hiking in the Catskills, or maybe get on the next train down to Manhattan for the day.
What are your thoughts? Are the numbers really fair and accurate?