This letter concerns a recent ad I created on behalf of Hoboken United, featuring a large map of Hoboken with number corresponding to areas where efforts were underway to create new parking. Hoboken Alliance is correct in pointing out that the number of spaces noted in the headline should total a bit over 7,000, not the 5,000 stated. In fact, the ad as I originally offered it did state a (rounded off) 7,000 figure. However, just as the ads were going to press, the city's business administrator, Bob Drasheff, called and asked me to reduce the number to 5,000. The reason given was the residents of new housing would take up about 2,000 of those spots, and therefore, the city did not want to claim that these were new spaces that might be used by current residents to ease Hoboken's long-standing parking shortage.
I note that Hoboken Alliance claims around 3,000 spots would actually be required by the creation of new housing units, so therefore, the dispute between the two sides' claims is about 1,000 parking spaces.
On Tuesday, the voters will decide for themselves who they find credible on this and other issues. For what it's worth, while making the ad I saw no intention on the part of Hoboken United to deceive on this matter. In fact, I viewed the desire to understate the number of new spaces (in the heat of an election no less) as an indication of good faith on the part of the people with whom I was dealing.
Thank you for allowing me to clear up this matter, which may have understandably left some people somewhat confused. In creating local political ads for various candidates over the years, I have done my best to consistently give the most accurate and clear presentation of the facts as I am able to understand them. I wish that I'd had the presence of mind at the time of the parking ad's creation to include an explanation as to why the numbers in the body copy and the headline were inconsistent.