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Recent Comments

Re: “Gasoline Kings

@ Mitch: On the distribution level, only two local jobbers remain, and according to Truman Renner they don’t compete with each other for contracts. Meanwhile, competitors from outside the county are handicapped by the costs of long-distance transportation.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Steve H on 07/11/2012 at 10:47 AM

Re: “Gasoline Kings

Nice story, Ryan. I appreciate the work you put into researching the market structure of each stage of the supply chain, as well as the retail price-setting mechanism. Cohelan's arguments don't really help us understand the differential between Humboldt County and the rest of the state. The key to our abysmal fuel prices appears to be the added cost of truck-based shipping to NoHum that facilitates market power for Chevron and its monopoly on marine barging. A tight oligopoly in jobbing (going so far as to have a no-compete arrangement) contributes as well.

Posted by Steve H on 07/08/2012 at 10:40 AM

Re: “The World Is Yours, Oyster Farmer

Heidi, a question: On your map (, and other maps I've seen (e.g., "arcata bay", or, the "northern bulbous extension of Humboldt Bay" is called Arcata Bay. In your story you refer to it as "North Bay," which I've never heard and never seen on a map. What gives? Is this a case of geographic revisionism?

Posted by Steve on 04/07/2012 at 7:18 AM

Re: “Neighhhhhh, they say

Lots of talk from the horse folks here. I see Chris Pratt above telling me how I as a bicyclist am supposed to think (I'm supposed to be perfectly happy with the frontage road, evidently).

How about a discussion of the bicycle part of the trail story? I ride my bike along the Clam Beach frontage road probably 30 times a year or more, and I would like to hear what State Parks has in mind for bicyclists.

Posted by Steve on 01/16/2012 at 8:00 PM

Re: “Whose Arcata?

Bob -- there are many of us in Arcata who support Cypress Grove and are proud of hosting a company like yours that produces a world-class product. Don't lose faith. Kevin H -- Sweet response. My frown is now upside down.

Posted by Steve on 08/28/2011 at 6:52 PM

Re: “Three Feet

As someone who both drives and cycles, I support this law. In my experience local drivers are overwhelmingly courteous to cyclists, and usually give 3' of room and cross the double yellow when safe to do so. Therefore the law would seem to simply legalize and ratify current best practice. Most experienced endurance cyclists are also courteous to drivers and provide room to pass when safe to do so. The anarchist cyclists (usually in towns, not out on rural byways) who won't follow basic traffic rules and act courteously give all cyclists a bad name.

Posted by Steve on 08/12/2011 at 6:49 AM

Re: “Smiles Screwed On

At the risk of committing the sin of seeing truth in both sides (and thus taking the fun out of being provocative): Siting and project permitting, particularly in the coastal zone, are unambiguously very difficult in California relative to many other places. There is no doubt that some job-creating projects have been snuffed out by time and cost burdens. The process is difficult in part because the well-being of public trust and common-pool resources are taken seriously in California. With Constitutionally protected free interstate migration, people can move to where policies are more in line with their preferences and ideologies. That process has resulted in an increasingly progressive California electorate that does not want the baggage that accompanies our prior experience with laissez-faire development policy (see LA or San Jose). Our economy is more sensitive to these regulatory costs than that of urban California due to our inherently higher cost of transporting goods to commercial centers. If we want a vibrant community up here, then we need jobs and income. How do we square this with our desire to have a rigorous siting process to protect community and environmental values? From a planning perspective, one mechanism for streamlining development is to create business and industrial parks. Rather than contend with costly siting and permitting on a case-by-case basis, conforming new development is principally permitted in a master-planned business/industrial park. While conservative folks abhor Arcata as antithetical to a business-friendly climate, that city has nevertheless successfully fostered manufacturing and industrial jobs in its Aldergrove Industrial Park. Such an approach is not a panacea, but I also think that it has not been fully explored and utilized in our area.

Posted by Steve on 11/26/2010 at 10:13 AM

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