The HSU Economic Index For October Is In!

The Index of Home Sales fell in September but is almost 14% higher than this time last year.  30-year mortgage rates in Humboldt County have decreased fro 4 per cent to 3.875 percent, while the median home price rose from $268,000 to $270,000.  In other words, things are pretty flat.  See the full report HERE..

StreamGuys Launches New Oceania Service


Press Contact:
Brian Galante
Dimension PR
(207) 494-8428

StreamGuys Launches Oceania Service in Alignment with Regional Business Growth

Strategic move will reduce streaming costs and network congestion for consumers of local content from NZME and other broadcasters through a regional point-of-presence

BAYSIDE, CALIFORNIA, October 22, 2015 — StreamGuys, a pioneering content delivery network and streaming media provider, has launched a new service to benefit its growing roster of broadcasters and their listeners across the Oceania region of the Asia-Pacific, including Australia, New Zealand and other surrounding islands. The new regional service will further strengthen StreamGuys’ overall Asia-Pacific strategy, which includes a Tokyo point of presence that services broadcasters in Japan, the Philippines and other northern Asia-Pacific countries.

Importantly, the Oceania service provides an overall better user experience for local residents, since the content is being consumed from a local point of presence (POP). Most Australia and New Zealand consumers are bound by metered accounts from ISPs, and international connectivity often becomes a bottleneck when consuming content delivered from overseas. This is a side effect of the higher expense of international bandwidth in comparison to local connectivity.

Up until recently, consumers streaming content from broadcasters in the Oceania region, including New Zealand Media and Entertainment (NZME), were served by StreamGuys’ data centers in Tokyo, Amsterdam or Chicago.

“Having the ability to serve content from within New Zealand greatly improves the end user experience, as consumers don’t have to use international transit to consume streaming content,” said Eduardo Martinez, director of technology, StreamGuys. “This move ensures that local listeners are not penalized for consuming content over congested international links, while getting the same exceptional quality of service from StreamGuys at a much closer point-of-presence.”

Wayne Sleeman, iHeartRadio NZ technical lead for NZME, adds that his online audiences get a great user experience as a result of the streams being delivered from the regional StreamGuys point-of-presence. StreamGuys is the exclusive content delivery network for NZME’s mobile streaming, and supports 74 online and mobile streams today.

“StreamGuys has supported our needs as a broadcaster moving beyond terrestrial-only deliver for the past several years, and continues to add new services and capacity to grow with us,” said Sleeman. “The establishment of a local point-of-presence confirms their commitment to our business model by helping us keep costs low for our regional online and mobile listeners.”

The new service, available today, offers plenty of capacity for other broadcasters in the region, and integrates the latest high-end, cloud-based streaming equipment. This includes virtualized servers to minimize hardware and maintenance; and software-defined transcoding equipment to accommodate multiple streaming formats. The flexible infrastructure offers high availability for quick deployments, and scalable streaming options based on changing broadcast dynamics.

About StreamGuys, Inc.
In business since 2000, StreamGuys is an industry-leading service provider of live and on-demand streaming, podcasting delivery, and software-as-a-service (SaaS) toolsets for enterprise-level broadcast media organizations. The company brings together the industry’s best price-to-performance ratio, a robust and reliable network, and an infinitely scalable cloud-based platform for clients of any size to process, deliver, monetize and playout professional streaming content. StreamGuys supports many of the world’s largest Podcasts, global TV and radio broadcasters, video and audio production companies, houses of worship, retail and hospitality businesses, government organizations, medical and healthcare services, and live venues for sports and entertainment. The company excels in developing and deploying technologies for business growth and revenue generation, including dynamic ad insertion, mobile streaming and detailed business and data analytics.

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Train Nuts, Morons, and Our Wack Harbor Election

Well, our sleepy little Harbor District is stealing all the attention in the upcoming November election.  As a First District resident,  I didn’t even get a ballot since the two doofuses who were supposed to run and were too incompetent to turn in their signatures left the field to Larry Doss who gets the job unopposed. Disgraceful!

So the action is all in the Second and Fifth Districts, and might be summarized as Higgins and Dale vs. Rotwein and Angeloff. There have been many strange issues and red herrings brought up in these races and very little clarity. Greg Dale either DOES or DOES NOT have a conflict of interest.  The Harbor District DOES or DOES NOT owe millions of dollars to the EPA. It IS binary!

Leo/Hank: One of the mini-issues has been Leo Sears’ shyness about being named a rail supporter  by Hank Sims of LOCO. Hank, of course, is famous for having labelled rail supporters “morons” in a discussion about restoring the North/South, or Eel River route.  I remain  proudly one of those “morons”  and I believe that restoring rail traffic to Marin would be a reasonable investment in our infrastructure, considering  it could be done for half a billion and would result in a world-class tourist attraction if done right and properly integrated with trails. On the other hand,  the East-West rail line being promoted by Angeloff  is lunacy.  It would cost at least a billion, have no tourist potential and have nothing to haul that doesn’t already have more efficient ways to get to market.

I cannot stress too strongly the difference between the two rail routes. East-West is a joke; North-South a noble endeavor.    No one who has ever personally ridden the train through the Eel River Valley is opposed to opening it up again.  No one. Yes, it will be expensive and will require more environmental safeguards than before but we would end up with a world -class tourist attraction which would attract folks who don’t necessarily enjoy backpacking.

 I was for several years a member of an amorphous group called the  Committee for Port/Rail Development.  At least I think that’s what they were called.  I have no written records of them although I must have attended several dozen of their monthly lunches at the Cookhouse.  Kaye Strickland was the wonderful lady who ran those lunches. I’m almost positive that’s where I met Leo. The group was not only amorphous-it was pretty much chaotic.  I don’t think they kept any attendance figures nor was any money collected.  Every once in a while Charles Ollivier would stand up and give an impassioned oration. There was a lot of discussion but nothing ever HAPPENED. Out of frustration, Mark Matteoli and some other guys started a committee called RAPIT but it was pretty short-lived. If you stroll into one of the monthly lunches being held by the “Humboldt Bay Harbor Working  Group” that evolved out of the 2012 Prosperity campaign,  you might think you’re in a time warp.  About 80% of the HBHWG were also involved in the CPD. More disclosure: I bailed from the Prosperity effort when we got to the point of recommending a full study of the East-West rail option. I didn’t think East/West would fly and I thought that would be the end of it.  Silly me! The CPR-backed Rotwein and Angeloff campaigns are pushing East/West as a route for moving their chesnuts or cherries or something.   If I’m a moron, these guys are lunatics.

A delicious complication appears to be on the horizon: Leo has taken out a Fictitious Business Name Statement in the Mad River Union announcing the establishment of something called “Economic Growth and Stability” located at TWO addresses in Eureka, which seems like a typo. The nicer house is located in the heart of Henderson Center and sports a huge Rex Bohn poster in the hedge. All roads led to Rex, apparently. So what’s Leo up to?  We could call and ask but what would be the fun in that? Stay tuned.

When I get around to having my “MORON AND PROUD” t-shirts printed up, I’ll let you know.  Meanwhile, the Times-Standard ran my letter the other day in which I advocate voting for Greg Dale and Pat Higgins. Wish I could vote!I

Letter to the Times-Standard, “Vote for Greg Dale and Pat Higgins”

The current Harbor Commission has, by and large, done a fine job in getting the District’s finances under control and setting a new course in the post-pulp mill era. The incumbents who are running for re-election, Greg Dale and Pat Higgins, deserve your vote. They bring experience and dedication. Their challengers bring flimflam and half-truths. The choice is clear. Vote for Pat Higgins and Greg Dale on November 3!


The August HSU Economic Index Is In

The August Economic Index as developed by Dr. Escher and his team at HSU is in, and we should recognize the folks who make it possible. the Index is sponsored by the California State and Federal Credit Union, Coast Central Credit Union, Redwood Capital Bank and Umpqua Bank.


“We have suspended the Lumber Manufacturing Index until we can obtain a sufficient number of data providers.”

“The Home Sales Index increased over the previous month, while all other indices fell or stayed the same.”

“30-year mortgage rates in Humboldt County have decreased from 4.125 percent to 4 percent, while the median home price rose from $269,500 to $271,500.”

“Northern California’s average price fell from $3.52 per gallon to $3.33 per gallon, and Eureka’s average gas price fell from $3.63 per gallon to $3.17 per gallon.”

Wow, I sure missed that last one! Click HERE for the Index, and have fun!

Tidbits & Gossip

A FOB (Friend of the Blog) advised us that Grocery Outlet is opening at Strong’s Plaza in Fortuna. GO confirms this and says they’re already pouring concrete in Fortuna. Different owners for Fortuna, however.

We learn from the Coos Bay World that service to Denver , yes, Denver, will continue through the summer. I find this somewhat amazing.

Finally, the SBDC will offer their excellent training for artisans and craftspeople with their programs “Making Your Business Ready for Online Sales”.    Click there for enrollment forms and good luck!


The June Economic Index From HSU Is In -Home Prices Up

The Economic Index for June is in and again we thank Dr. Escher and his hardworking associates.  This month’s Index represents a milestone of sorts since the Lumber Manufacturing Index has been suspended “until we can find a sufficient number of data providers”.  Pretty sad when you consider the many years in which timber was king around here.   The Home Sales and Hospitality Indices are up, as you would expect during the summer,  bur Retail sales and Employment are down,  which you would NOT expect. Take a look at their Gas Prices graph and tell me demand isn’t 90% of the picture. 



Weed TV

There is so much programming on TV about weed or cannabis or whatever you want to call it that it seems inevitable that there will eventually be a whole channel or channels devoted to the plant, its cultivation, its politics, its uses. I’m surprised no one has done it yet although I’m sure there are “channels” on You Tube that fill the void.

In terms of network television, however, we’re getting a lot of repeats and reruns, that is if you can figure out the programming. CNN has Sanjay Gupta going on and on about weed,  HBO had something that I can’t remember. CNN is also airing the only show of this ilk that is at all interesting. It’s called “High Profits” and I THINK the last episode runs tonight at 7pm.  When you have to depend on the info on the Suddenlink program guide and Google comes up empty, that’s where we’re at.

The show is about the efforts of some young entrepreneurs to expand their mj dispensary business in Breckinridge, Colorado, a rich ski resort community many miles away from anywhere else, sort of like Aspen.  So far, they have heavily invested in a huge growing facility but they need to retain their retail location on the main street of Breckinridge, or believe they do, in order to move all that weed.  The cast of characters includes the business owners  the local pols, the developers who want a “family” atmosphere on Main Street and of course the vile consultants who gravitate leech-like to the controversy. Last week they lost the special election which would have given them a permanent place on Main Street, and now they are being forced to remove out to Airport Road with the rest. It all sounds awfully familiar but in an interesting locale, quite different from ours. If you want to see it, set your recorders for CNN at 7pm.

I note with regret that “One Good Year”,  the Redway-produced documentary about the local scene apparently never got a distribution deal. It’s available on YouTube in a one-hour version although it was originally publicized as feature-length. Maybe they ran out of money.  It happens.