To the Editor:
On behalf of the Borough Merchants of Princeton (BMP), I would like to thank Borough Council for voting not to extend parking meter hours, or adding Sunday meter hours, at the July 13 Council meeting. We appreciate their understanding of the difficult times many businesses are experiencing as a result of the ongoing construction projects.
Thank you, also, to all the merchants who supported BMP efforts to avoid these changes, and especially to those merchants who attended the meeting to share their concerns.
This was a perfect example of different groups working together to achieve a common goal a thriving downtown serving not only visitors to Princeton but especially our local neighbors. People do business with people they know, and the BMP wants all the residents of Princeton, as well as visitors, to come back downtown, get a great parking spot in one of the conveniently located garages, and "get to know us" again.
KATHLEEN MAGUIRE MOROLDA
To the Editor:
As a follow-up to my informal survey of the usage level of Princeton Borough's $13.7 million, 520-space, 5-story parking garage on June 11, today at 2:45 p.m. I surveyed the parking garage again and found the following usage by garage level:
level 5, zero parked vehicles.
How this new parking garage will "pay for itself" must be a growing concern to Borough residents who are obligated to pay bondholders if user fees continue to fall short. The Borough's implicit answer is that it will compel drivers to use the garage by constructing buildings on top of the Tulane Street and Witherspoon "flag" lots which operate at close to 90 percent capacity thus to terminate their use by drivers.
In this manner, the Borough hopes to solve the problem of a garage user shortage by creating a shortage of parking spaces. Yet the Borough's stated reason for the garage was to remedy a parking shortage (sometimes called a "crisis"). Hence the garage can pay for itself only if the Borough worsens the parking shortage it was supposedly building the garage to end.
There is a way to escape this dilemma: the Borough should sell the parking garage to private investors who will pay taxes instead of seeking tax payments. If Borough projections of garage usage at eventual full capacity are correct, then investors should be willing to assume the financial risks now borne by Borough taxpayers.
R. WILLIAM POTTER
To the Editor:
"McGreevey has Taken the State For a Spin"
The Newark Star-Ledger. "
Throughout the state, in newspaper headlines and around office water coolers, people are criticizing Governor Jim McGreevey and his $28 billion budget. To a certain extent, I believe this is unfair.
The real culprits are the members of the New Jersey Legislature who approved the budget. Here in Princeton, they would be Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, and State Senator Shirley Turner. These are the folks who ultimately are responsible for making New Jersey one of the highest taxed states in the country. These are the people who passed a budget that includes $1.7 billion in tax increases from last year, which is, by the way, more than the governor asked for in February. It is these and others in the State Senate and Assembly who approved the borrowing of $2.7 billion in order to balance the budget. (Didn't they tell us a couple of weeks ago it would be $800 million less?) Gusciora, Watson Coleman, Turner, and their brethren are the ones who deserve the outrage and disdain of the people in New Jersey. They will have a lot of explaining to do next year when they are all up for re-election.
Personally, I'm reserving my criticism of Jim McGreevey to his Clintonesque explanation of his reference to Machiavelli and his choice of friends.
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