SQUAW ALPINE TRANSIT COMPANY BOARD OF DIRECTORS
QUARTERLY MEETING MINUTES
Wednesday, October 29, 2020
1. Call to Order
Chair Keith Fountain called today’s meeting to order at 9:02 AM. A quorum was established.
2. Roll Call and Establishment of Quorum
Board members in attendance
Board members not in attendance
Erin Casey joined the call at 10:03 AM
3. Changes to Agenda / Adopt Agenda
It was moved by Tetrault and seconded by Stepner to adopt today’s agenda as presented. Motion carried unanimously.
It was moved by Stepner and seconded by Fountain to approve the minutes of the September 30, 2020 meeting as presented. Motion carried unanimously.
5. Public Comment
There were no comments on items not on today’s agenda.
6. Board Member Comments
There were no additional comments.
7. Chairman’s Report
FY20-21 Board Meeting Dates Set
The dates for calendar year 2021 quarterly and annual meetings were communicated. All meetings until further notice are planned to take place via Zoom. Board members were asked to be on the lookout for calendar invites for all five meetings and RSVP to them as soon as possible.
Downtowner Agreements executed
Fountain reported the agreements with Downtowner and Mountaineer, and our partners have all been executed. A lot of flexibility was built in for the fleet, hours, and drivers so changes can be made as necessary during the season based on demand. Fountain thanked Doyle for her involvement in the process.
Fountain suggested to Martin that the Operations Committee meet regularly with Travis at Downtowner to monitor demand and revenues and make recommendations to the executive committee on service reductions or increases as necessary.
Health & Safety Protocols
Fountain and Doyle got guidance from Martin on COVID safety protocols and combined it with Downtowner’s information on what has been done in other destinations they work in regarding driver and passenger behaviors, sanitation procedures, and vehicle occupancy. Fountain expects fewer passengers will sit more spaced out in vehicles. Changes may be made to our protocols as necessary based on driver and passenger positive COVID cases and changes in CDC and State guidelines.
8. Treasurer’s Report
Q4 Financial Reports including Delinquency Report
Motion that Board has reviewed Q4 financial reports
Doyle referenced the Q4 financial reports included in the meeting packets. Action on this item was tabled until all Board members can review the information.
Stepner explained the Revenue Expense Summary spreadsheet distributed is cash based, although McClintock Accountancy uses accrual-based accounting for financial reports. That explains the difference in the reports submitted. There are sixty-six delinquent accounts, totaling approximately $10,000. Thirty-seven have submitted appeals. Of the remaining, most appeals have to do with Placer County not accessing penalties for late payments. According to Placer County Revenue Services, those appeals, totaling just under $3,000, should be approved.
b. Fiscal Year Projections / Cash Flow [Rev Exp Summary] & Discussion
Doyle, Stepner, and Benjaminson have been working on the projections. Stepner presented the spreadsheet distributed to the Board. He reviewed specific line items and explained the assumptions made as the forecast was being developed. The year is budgeted to end even, but there are some concerns. Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows are limiting the sale of same-day walk-up lift tickets. Revenue from daily lift tickets is shown to be $50,000, but that is hard to predict. That said, lodging may be better than forecasted.
Stepner said the bottom line is the forecasted budget is break even and calls for repaying SVSH $75,000.
Fountain explained how revenues are accounted for and the plan to pay SVSH back for the loan. Other variables include lodging, but can be watched based on a mix of occupancy at the Village, Granite Peak Management, and the Resort at Squaw Creek, combined with ridership numbers from Downtowner.
Cohen agreed this year will be dynamic and watched day-to-day with input from Martin, Crezee, restaurants, and ski area visitation. There are a lot of IKON pass holders, which could be SATCo users. Communication and constant adjusting will be key this winter. The ski area opening will be very conservative and terrain will open as conditions allow.
Martin is confident that with the boots on the ground and information from regulatory agencies, everyone will be able to act accordingly. The harder piece is getting information regarding lodging and delayed revenues from TBID. Martin reported October has been busy. He hopes that carries into November and the holidays.
Doyle offered to assist Martin in convening regular meetings of the Operations Committee. She suggested holding the course of the schedule through the Christmas/New Year’s holidays and not making changes before mid-January. Doyle will work with Jess Weaver to develop talking points to address potential questions and/or complaints about service levels for SVAM frontline staff, the Board, partners and drivers so there is a consistent response to riders and assessed businesses.
9. Executive Director Report
a. Partnership Updates - OVI, RSC and SVAM
Doyle described the OVI and SVAM Intervalley Shuttle agreements are the same service levels as last year. New this winter, Mountaineer will operate RSC’s fixed route Monday – Friday and RSC will operate on Saturday and Sunday. Downtowner was innovative in putting their proposal together with RSC and SATCo splitting the cost of the one shared vehicle. Conly described the service RSC will offer and said this is the integration offering the economy of scale RSC has been working on for over two years. RSC will use larger vehicles on the weekends, but Mountaineer’s smaller vehicles mid-week. The combination will expand the service offered. Conly described the pick up and drop off locations will be at Members Locker Room as it historically has been and is approved by SVSH and fire marshal. A brief discussion followed regarding ways to communicate the locations to riders. Martin said the Operations Committee and SVSH will ensure there is no point of congestion and that all parties, including the Fire Department, are accommodated.
Doyle showed the OVI and RSC vehicle decal images and offered suggestions on how to make it recognizable and consistent for riders. The Operations Committee and partners will consider options.
b. Marketing Items including website refresh
Doyle thanked Squaw Alpine’s marketing team for working with her to execute a marketing plan. A press release was issued on October 14 about the service. The website has been refreshed with a target audience of existing and new passengers, this iswho visit the site. Colors were changes to tie into Mountaineer’s branding. Doyle asked Board members to look at the site and give her feedback. A COVID page was added because travelers are choosing to go to destinations that communicate their safety protocols.
Stepner asked about strategies to get information out locally and suggested a brief write up will be released to residents in the Valley and more information as opening day approaches. Mike Carabetta is posting information as well. Doyle said efforts will be same as last year and offered to email the marketing plan to the Board and asked them to review it and send her comments.
Doyle is working SVAM marketing staff to update the business card sized handout and flyers, which are being printed and will be distributed a week or so before service commences. She
10. Action Items
a. Vision Statement discussion and approval
Fountain reviewed the efforts to finalize the Vision Statement and thanked the Board for its participation in the process. The statement proposed encapsulates the consensus of input identified at the last meeting.
It was moved by Fountain and seconded by Crezee to adopt the Vision Statement as follows:
“To continue to be the leader and innovator of free, on-demand micro transit in and around Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows resulting in reduced personal vehicle use, and remaining open to future integration with regional transportation systems where there are measurable benefits to assessed businesses and their guests.” Motion carried unanimously.
b. Placer County designated seat update
The Placer County CEO will appoint Jennifer Merchant’s replacement.
There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting adjourned at 10:04 AM. The next SATCo meeting is scheduled for January 13, 2021.