SQUAW ALPINE TRANSIT COMPANY BOARD OF DIRECTORS SPECIAL MEETING
Thursday, December 31, 2020, 10:00 a.m.
1. Chairman Fountain called the meeting to order at 10:02am
2. Roll Call and Establishment of Quorum
Board members in attendance
Mike Martin (10:29)
Stephen Murray of Downtowner
Travis Gleason of Downtowner
3. Changes to / Adopt Agenda
It was moved by Benjaminson and seconded by Creeze to adopt today’s agenda with the addition of an item to talk about postponing or canceling the next quarterly board meeting schedule for January 13. Motion carried unanimously.
4. Public Comment
There were no comments on items not on today’s agenda.
5. Action Item
a. Discuss and vote to suspend or terminate winter 2020-21 Mountaineer service due to State of California Stay at Home Order affect on tourism and SV|AM MMTD assessments
Fountain reviewed that we went into the 2020-21 season projecting 50% revenues and due to COVID-19 impacts, most impactfully the stay-at-home order (SAHO) that is in effect December 15 through January 1. Fountain brought to the board’s attention column BA of the Revenue Expense Summary forecasted/budgeted revenues and explained that these revenues are at great risk, especially due to the likely possibility of an extended stay at home order.
We’ve been transparent with Downtowner and have been in ongoing discussions with them about today’s board’s decision. Discussion followed about waiting until the SAHO decision had been made by the state and how they determine whether to extend it. It was clarified that SAHO is not just based on ICU capacity, but 30-day worst-case ICU capacity forecast. Discussion followed including service utilization, who is using the service ie the non-paying riding segments, are people comfortable about using the service or will they choose to take their own vehicle because there are no traffic or parking challenges.
Board member opinions were solicited. Conly informed that Resort at Squaw Creek has cancelled Mountaineer contract for remainder of the season and he recommends core service go dark and come back strong next year.
Grant wants to be sure that our partner will be okay if we cancel remainder of season. Grant feels the brand will survive. Grant sees zero opportunity to recover financially.
Tetrault agrees that we need to course correct.
Martin joined the meeting late and echoed others’ opinions.
We don’t want to be petri dish experiment; there is no upside here according to Grant. Gleason commented on petri dish comment and explained that there have been no issues in other destinations that they’ve been running safely since March 2020. He does not recommend this as an important factor in the decision before the board.
Doyle added that it would be nice to use SAHO extension as cover for the board’s decision.
Stepner suggested the service continue if the SAHO is lifted and wait to make the decision after the state makes their determination.
Grant urged that as a non-profit the organization needs to limit risk as much as possible and there was consensus that enough is known now to make a decision today.
Fountain reviewed the five closure options distributed prior to the meeting and explained that we have to close by the 4th of month so we don’t incur an additional lease payment. Fountain asked for any questions about the options? Grant offered that for option 3, if the board approves this option today, Downtowner could notify drivers immediately instead of waiting until Jan 4 to notify drivers.
Evan made motion to make January 4, 2021 the final day of Mountaineer winter 2020-21 operations including one week severance pay to drivers, Kyle seconds. Motion carried unanimously. Discussion followed that this option limits SATCo’s financial exposure the most in case there was an accident January 7-11 and frees drivers to look for a new job January 5. It was suggested that we wait if possible to release our messaging until after the state SAHO announcement.
6. Next Quarterly Board Meeting scheduled for January 13
A brief discussion took place and it was decided that Fountain and Doyle would decide to continue with the meeting as planned or cancel it. Doyle will notify the board accordingly.
There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting adjourned at 11:12 AM.