Yesterday, short-term rental hosts in Jersey City — who are currently urging voters to Vote No on Municipal Question 1 — sent a letter to Mayor Fulop, calling on him to help restore civility to the ongoing campaign. This letter follows recent harassment and intimidation targeting a number of hosts, including several signers of this letter.
Wednesday, October 16, 2019
Hon. Steven M. Fulop
Mayor, City of Jersey City
280 Grove Street
Jersey City, NJ 07302
We are writing you as residents of Jersey City who are members of the host community that is opposed to your ordinance banning short-term rentals in the city and who are encouraging a “No’ vote on Municipal Question 1.
The fight over the ordinance — which we believe will damage the economic security of many Jersey City working families — has been intense and likely will become more so in the closing weeks of this campaign.
This is why we write you now — to ensure that this race will be fought over the merits, and not in the gutter.
In recent weeks, many of us and our fellow short-term rental hosts have become the victims of harassment and intimidation by certain individuals who support your ban.
This has included, but is not limited to, physical intimidation and incidents of possible criminal trespass and criminal damage of property that were reported to Jersey City Police. The intended effect of these actions, we believe, is to deter residents on our side from openly participating in the democratic process in Jersey City.
Some of the individuals involved, we believe, began their malign activity just as the ordinance fight came to the City Council. Members of our community have been “doxxed,” and have been made to feel unsafe. This has to stop.
To be clear, we do not assert any coordination between you and the individuals behind this activity.
However, we know that, as the chief advocate and highest-profile advocate for the “Yes” vote, your words clearly denouncing the behaviors of the individuals who have targeted our campaign and our host community would go a long way.
We, too, unequivocally and without hesitation denounce any and all forms of intimidation, scare tactics and anything else done in bad faith to stop people from participating in the electoral process.
We know we come from different sides of the issue but are sure that we all want an election that is fair and free of intimidation — and a Jersey City that looks out for the well-being of all its residents.
We thank you for your time and look forward to your attention to this matter.