This ‘One Boston’ Ad Buy Is One Big Mystery

A newly formed PAC will debut 'One Boston' ads starting Wednesday morning.

Last week, a woman named Jocelyn Hutt, of Roslindale, filled out some paperwork with the Massachusetts Office of Campaign and Political Finance (OCPF), and just like that created the “One Boston Independent Expenditure Political Action Committee.” No big deal; anybody can open a PAC. Few took much note.

Well, it’s time to sit up and take note now.

One Boston IE PAC just made a big ad buy for the final week leading up to next Tuesday’s election—$67,850 at WCVB-TV alone for the period of October 30 (Wednesday) through November 4 (Monday, the day before the election), according to documents filed with the FCC Monday. That’s a big buy for just one station; it probably means a total buy of around a quarter-million dollars.

I don’t know what it’s for. I know that it’s a PAC making a political ad buy, clearly for next week’s election. I’d have to guess it’s either for the mayoral race, or perhaps the East Boston casino vote.

According to the OCPF paperwork, Hutt, an interior designer in Roslindale, is One Boston IE PAC’s chair and treasurer. She has confirmed for me that she is the PAC’s chair, but is otherwise declining to speak with the press at this point. I am unaware of any obvious connections between Hutt and anything to do with either the mayoral campaign or the casino debate.

By odd coincidence—and as far as I can tell it is, truly, just a coincidence—Marty Walsh has just launched his first ad of the final election stretch, a 30-second ad titled “One Boston.”

For “purpose” of her committee, Hutt responded on the OCPF form: “One Boston closely monitors the policy positions of local elected officials in Boston and runs independent expenditure campaigns on behalf of candidates and incumbents who work to support greater economic security for middle-class families and against those who oppose this agenda.” Under “specific issues and interests,” she wrote: “Creating jobs here at home with decent pay and benefits for working people.”

I can easily picture a pro-Walsh, pro-Connolly, pro-casino, or anti-casino advocate writing all of that. Or really, just about anybody doing anything political.

The ad placement was made through a New Jersey-based political media firm with a Boston office. I don’t see any obvious connection between that company and either the mayoral or casino campaigns.

I did notice that the ad placement specified a target demographic: “Women 50+.” Most political ad placements that I see specify “adult 35+.” So, whatever that means.

Anyway, I hope to learn soon the plans for “One Boston.” But if not, we should know soon enough—the first ads are set to air Wednesday morning during the 6 a.m. hour.