> New Jersey rarely misses the opportunity to tax something, anything, everything. The state's efforts to tax toilet paper once led to a notorious state house protest. So it's really no wonder that cable companies and Verizon (NYSE: VZ), usually at each other's throats, are banding together to try to get Dish Network (Nasdaq: DISH) and DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV) on the tax rolls. Right now the two satellite providers don't have to pay any form of franchise fees to municipal, county or state governments, which the New Jersey Cable Telecommunications said "distorts the market in favor of one type of provider over another." Of course, there are those in New Jersey who might like to see things go the other way: stop taxing cable and telco service providers. But that will happen when the tide goes out and stays out at the Jersey shore. Story.
> Cable equipment distributor Avnet is spending an undisclosed amount of money to purchase Broadband Integrated Resources, a repair shop for cable TV equipment. The move, Avnet said in a news release, "demonstrates our commitment to expand into adjacent services opportunities and provides an entry into the reverse logistics business.
> Avail-TVN said it will spend in excess of $30 million over the next two years o expand its video distribution technology and other capabilities to support "next-generation digital media offerings." It's all part of a TV Everywhere play--or at least a TV Everywhere preparation play. News release.
> Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) could be soaring too high and too close to the sun, stock value-wise, considering all the challenges it faces as it sits at the "crossroads, with its core DVD mail rental business being replaced by streaming video," writes Leo Sun in Investor Guide. Sun's advice? "Perhaps it would be prudent to wait for a pullback or the company's next earnings." Story.
> NDS, moving closer to where the action is (in this case customer Cox Communications and probably Cisco's Scientific-Atlanta unit) has opened a professional services office in Atlanta. Story.
And finally... There are new (spin) doctors in the house at Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) and Time Warner (NYSE: TWC-WI). Comcast hired PR vet Adam Miller as a senior advisor and TW named Richard Silos as vice president-corporate affairs. Story.