By now you’ve probably heard that the wealthy developer/real estate lobbying group Mile Square Taxpayers Association (MSTA) pulled out all the stops and falsehoods, overturning our 2012 rent control election victory in the courtroom. Once again the citizens of Hoboken must go to the polls and tell this lobbying group that we will not let them harm our town. Last year the Hoboken Fair Housing Association (HFHA) shared the reasons why the MSTA initiative to end rent control protections would harm our community by permanently exempting 1-4 unit buildings from rent control and granting complete vacancy decontrol to larger buildings giving landlords tremendous incentive to push out any tenant whose rent is less that $2500 (or perhaps $3000) a month.
The Appellate decision flies in the face of everything that all of us believed about the sanctity of our elections. How could any group march into a courtroom and present fabricated evidence as fact without challenge? How could the appeals court deny a person that they had allowed to intervene in a case the right to present proof that the lower court evidence wasn’t credible?
On November 5, you will have the opportunity to defend your friends, your neighbors and yourselves by voting no on the Hoboken Public Question intended to end rent control in Hoboken. The language of the question is confusing (intentionally designed that way by MSTA), but the only way to protect our community from this destructive developer group is to make sure that we all go to the polls and vote no.
You will hear a lot from these developers. They have the money to blitz the town with lots of false information. They will verbally attack some of our friends and neighbors directly. They will even try to tell you that a yes vote will maintain rent protections. It won’t.
In advance of all the dishonest talking points that MSTA will claim including, with a wry smirk, assurances that all current tenants will be protected if you vote their way, please ask yourselves the following questions:
What kind of city do you want Hoboken to be? Do you want it to be a town that only exists for the highest bidders? Do you want Hoboken to be a city of transience? Can Hoboken sustain itself when rents are so high that people are forced to move year after year, never able to put down roots, to join in neighborhood struggles, or even to discover what those struggles are?
This is exactly what MSTA wants: transient residents who don’t feel a connection to the community.
The push to capitalize on market value in Hoboken is already eviscerating what is really of value – the remnants of a unique blend of artists, musicians, working class folks, immigrants and newer committed neighbors without whom Hoboken will have none of its original substance and vitality. In order for our city to remain healthy and alive it is of the utmost importance that each and every one of us vote no on Hoboken’s anti-rent protection ballot question on Nov. 5.
Visit: HobokenFairHousing.com for more information.