Friday, January 06, 2017

What happened to Eureka Recreational Softball?

I have had a few arguments with Eureka City staff in the past about the drop off of Adult Recreational Softball in Eureka. This last year there were 17 Men's Adult Softball Teams and 0 Women's teams. In 1981 there were 55 men's teams and  and 37 Women's teams. There was also an active men's fast pitch league with about 10 team. That means there was over 100 adult teams playing softball in 1981!

What happened? In 1981 there were 39 teams playing in Arcata, and we had around 50 this last year, 2016. So the interest still is there. There has been huge league expansions over the years in Crescent City, Medford, Redding, Fortuna and Ukiah. Why such a drop off in Eureka?

Number one reason is the field conditions. If you ever had the chance to check out the Eureka Fields and compare them to the Arcata fields, you know what I am talking about. In 1981 Eureka used 7 fields for league. Highland, Carson Park (Two fields), Cooper Gulch (Two Fields), Kennedy and Hartman fields.

What I am surprised about is the lack of outcry from Eureka businesses. When you have the well over 1,000 people playing ball you fill the pizza parlors, brewery's and bars. Tom's Sourdough, Angelo's, Shakey's....all would be crazy full. 

I personally would like to see Eureka advertise, solicit and expand recreation adult sports. If not, it is Eureka's loss. 

(Below is standing for men's league in 1981.) 

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Don't be mad, get active! Vote for delegates going to Dem Convention.

If you are a registered Democrat and have some time available from 10am to 12:30pm this Saturday, please come to the Labor Temple on E st. and vote for one of those Progressive Democrats in the link above.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Mike Wilson's last day as Harbor Commission.

Let me say that I have been so fortunate to have been associated with someone who worked so hard in his 10 years as the 3rd Division Humboldt Bay Harbor Commissioner. Mike challenged me to think topics out at higher levels than just probing an issue face value. Mike led the Harbor District during some really stressful changeover of staff and was instrumental on keeping the Harbor District "afloat" (No pun intended) by his leadership.

I consider Mike the king of "policy wonks" and have admired his wanting technical details of a project before pushing forward. Mike was peerless as a negotiator to help the Harbor District garner funds for the future King Salmon dredging project and keeping the Commissioners informed of the process. Mike served consecutive terms as President of the Commission and was on the lead of bringing the EPA on to help clean-up the old Pulp Mill.

I can't say enough good things about Mike. Although his taste in foods might not align with mine. But he has opened my mind to strange cuisines and had me taste foods I normally wouldn't try. And he is great to have a beer with and shoot the crap bout all things life.

Godspeed Mike as Supervisor of the 3rd District of Humboldt County. They are lucky to have you.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

1091 to be taken out of water.

The former Navy vessel "1091" will be pulled away from dock by England Marine at 7:30am and towed to grounding spot below Samoa Cookhouse at 8am. Hope all goes well.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Humboldt County Democrats reboot Communication and Education Committee

Newly elected Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee (HCDCC) member Michele Walford from the 1st District chaired a recent Communication and Education Committee (CEC) meeting on Tuesday November 29th at HCDCC Headquarters. It was more of reorganization or restructuring of a committee that is tasked with electronic media, member support and training, technology support, and community communication, such as website and facebook maintenance but tonight the focus was energizing new members and new volunteers. Over 20 people came to participate.

The CEC opened with a pledge of Allegiance to the flag. (There, we are not all communist, socialistic liberal left wing anti Americans!)

The first thing we discussed is “Who or what are we locally and State wise as Democrats?” There was some back and forth about how the Democratic National Committee screwed up the Primary election for Bernie Sanders but all agreed we need to heal and solve this issue in the future. So as local Democrats, “What are we?”

For the People
Believe in Science/Climate change
Open to all Color and Sexes
Working Class

So after identifying who we are, what can we do to help the local Democratic Party?

Support Young Democrats
Support Black Lives Matter
Support Community Building
Extend outreach to all
Connect with Minorities
Support likeminded local candidates

What can we do right now in the immediate?

Fill empty seats on HCDCC
Do Outreach on registered Democrats who haven’t ever voted
Register voters who haven’t ever participated door to door
Fill vacated offices or seats for Special Districts such as:

a.    School Districts
b.    Community Service Districts
c.    Fire Boards
d.    Other Special Districts

What message do we want our leaders to have?

Differentiate what Democrats are doing as opposed to Republicans
Be the Source of Truth with details
Know we are watching their votes
Know we have their backs on decisions when they do their job right

What can CEC do better?

Do weekly updates on causes
Better use of social media with HCDCC Facebook page

Next topic of issue for the 2017 CEC will be a resolution to “Abolish the Electoral College.”

Monday, November 21, 2016

Is Recession on the way since Trump is in office?

USA Today has a great story and graph about how recessions come and go, but largely when Republicans are in the white house. Click the USA link to see the full graph back to 1901.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Humboldt Bay Shipping up 70%!

Since I was elected commissioner for the 4th Division of the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation and Conservation District (HBHR&CD) in 2009 the narrative from some people critical of the commission has been a conceived notion we have given up on shipping and only focus on Aquaculture. This is not the case. We have had setbacks that we were not able to control such as shoaling caused by  sediment from the Eel river that received large volumes of rain this last year. This caused a few ships to be turned away, but overall we are surviving.

In 2016 we are expected to reach cargo levels of 583,019 metric tons. That is a 70% increase from 2015! Not only that, projections for 2017 shows we will nearly reach the million ton threshold next year which would be an additional 68.1% increase and a level not achieved in Humboldt Bay since 1991! A quarter of a century ago! That was when we had 2 pulp mills and one sawmill on the peninsula with nearly 1,000 high wage union workers. How did this happen? California Redwood has made vast improvements and upgrades to their facility with hopes of 10-12 vessels in 2017 and Schneider dock has picked up more log customers and Sierra Pacific dock reports stabilized business.

I know many people feel the Timber Industry is dead, but Lumber/Logs and Wood Chips represent about 50% of our shipping tons. When the pulp mills were open they added another 350,000 tons a year. From 2000 to 2008 the Samoa Pulp mill represented about 25% of the total volume of tonnage. That was a huge loss.

So since I have been in office we have went from 316,480 metric tons of cargo to 583,019. An 84% increase. If we reach the projected 980,000 metric tons next year, that will be a 209.7% percent increase since I took office. Is that not pretty good shipping increases? And we should have 2 cruise ships to boot in 2017.

The HBHR&CD commissioners continue to be proactive in soliciting businesses that would be a good fit to the bay and we have done our best to lobby and make sure dredging by the Army Corp is done each year. We are thankful to have partnerships with California Redwood, Schneider dock, and Sierra Pacific to make sure this happens.