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Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes: May 20, 2017

The Board held its regular May meeting and convened at 8:05 AM at the Basebox

 Jon Anderson

Alan Bates

Annika Holtan

Meg Hourihan - absent

Matt Kenny - on phone at 9AM

Eric Palola

Ron Shems - absent

Deb Steines

John Tobin

 

8:05 AM          Call to Order by Eric Palola, VP

           

8:05 PM          Welcome & Shareholder Comments

 

welcomed board member elect Meg Schultz

           

8:10 AM          Approve minutes of March 11,

 

Annika requested to amend minutes to ‘on average’ 14 times concerning donations on the PoP Campaign

Jon Anderson moved to approve, seconded by John Tobin all present approved.

 

Approve minutes of April 1, 2017

Annika moved to approve, seconded by Eric Palola

All present approved        

8:09 AM          Management Report (Matt)

 May 20th management report attached.

8:20  AM         Finance Committee Report (John Tobin)

The Finance Committee met this past Thursday review April financials and the 2017/18 budget and pricing proposal.  John complimented Matt on his ability to put together a comprehensive budget when only on the job 2 1/2 months.

We are currently projecting an approximate $100k loss by fiscal year end September with all summer expenditures factored in. This is much better compared to the previous year, even with 3 major thaw events last season.  Paid off the line of credit (LOC) in March, and drew $75k on the LOC in May, expect to be into the LOC this year by about $275k-$300k vs. a $600k draw in FY 2016.

8:30  AM         Fund Raising Committee Report (Annika)

Annika thanked Matt for all his hard work.  The information he has provided has been a huge help to the campaign.

Thanked Bob Demont for his services, current pledges $2.3 mil, mountain received a grant from SMF of $35k this month.  Snowmaking electrical improvements will be completely paid off by the end of the second quarter.

Two grant requests going to SMF: mountain mower (used); and Birdcage deck and arctic entry (airlock). Birdcage work to be completed by the fall with donor restricted funds.  Mountain mower purchase is dependent on availability of donations since the Co-op is not forward funding any capital expenditures.

A Snowmaking operational and capital strategy has been developed by Matt and staff.  Discussions are in progress with potential donors to fund implementation this summer.  The recommendation has been made to cross train staff, begin making snow earlier, and purchase new equipment. Two new fan guns, two stick guns with air compressors, a new booster pump that would carry more water, and a generator to boost electric output to 2300’. 

Matt working with Efficiency Vermont (EV) to lower electric costs not only for snowmaking but also in all the facilities. EV has representatives who specialize in ski areas and they toured the mountain in May with Matt and staff.

The Campaign will launch early in the 2017/18 season and will have more information in September, and announce the date of the public launch at Green and Gold.

All payments to Demont Assoc have been made and he will remain involved through the end of the campaign.

9:00 AM          Preliminary Budget Presentation and discussion (Matt)

This is the preliminary budget and will not be voted on until the June meeting.

Reviewing new pass opportunities, planning on one daily pass rate, still need to finalize the revenue modeling tool and pass and daily rates.

The final budget will be presented to the Finance Committee prior to the June board meeting, along with details supporting the revenue.  It will then go to the Board on June 17th.

Deri questioned the breakeven strategy and the message it sends.  Discussion ensued supporting a return to a positive NOI but we were not ready to do that this year, and to look at this year as a transition year.

9:20 AM          Additional Shareholder Comments

Deb brought up the need for a board retreat to discuss the status of the by-laws, strategic plan, and mission statement.  We need to decide on a date and begin prep work to achieve the most.

 

Annika stressed the need for the board to understand the by-laws as well as reviewing them.  She also stressed the need to review all our policies, especially the Forestry plan.

 

Comment by shareholder: Rocky sees the long-term path to MR being educational and recreational.

 

9:00 AM          Action Item Review - for June meeting

POP depreciation questions

Final Budget

Determine timing and details of the Board Retreat, Deb to send doodle polls

9:45 AM Board went into Executive Session

10:40 AM Came out of Executive session.      

The Board adjourned its meeting at 10:40 AM.  The next regular meeting will be June17th.

 

Submitted

Deb Steines

Management ReportSubmitted for May 20, 2017 Board Meeting

 

From the GM

It has been a busy 2 ½ months since my arrival at the beginning of March.  I enjoyed getting to know the staff, shareholders and MRG guests in what proved to be an amazing last 3 weeks of the season.  I am finally getting the chance to settle in and start working on, and adding to, a lengthy “To Do” list.  My time has mostly been spent working on the FY18 Budget, FY18 Pricing and the POP Campaign.  It has been great to jump into the POP Campaign and assist wherever possible to move the campaign forward.  I am looking forward to spending more time with staff this summer to find ways to enhance the MRG experience and reduce operational costs where possible. 

General Starks Pub opens for the summer this Thursday, May 25th.  I will be returning to Juneau to move my family to VT and will be gone from May 25th through June 14th. 

Think Sun!

 

Matt Lillard

General Manager

Mad River Glen Cooperative

 

Department Reports

Administration

April and May were busy months wrapping up the books for the 16-17 season including various reconciliations and billing.   We have spent lots of time gathering information for the FY18 Budget. We are now down to 2 staff for the summer.  Our various insurance policies have all been audited and new policies are in place.  We are looking forward to working together to make the next ski season a success.

Share SalesShare sales for April were zero unfortunately but the upside is that there were no new tenders. We have begun revising the Co-op Share collateral information which will include a revised home page presence.

Basebox

The Basebox got a thorough cleaning and floor treatments this spring in anticipation of summer operations which start May 25th, Thursday-Saturday, through Columbus Weekend.  The Basebox held a few functions in May.

Marketing

Marketing has been developing the messaging for our proposed new flat ticket pricing concept along withthe communication plan. This plan will consist of a revised direct mail campaign and  new marketing collateral materials.  Involved in the analysis of our results and trends as they relate to discussions of budget and pricing. This is the time of year we have the time to engage and network in the local community. Highlights include meetings with VT Businesses for Social Responsibility, The Onion River Co-op, the Mad River Valley Chamber of Commerce, the Mad River Valley Planning District, the New England Ski Areas Council and the Waterbury Tourism Council. We have also been allocating time to connect with various vendors as we develop their role in the marketing plan for the coming season. These include our website developer, videographer, graphic artist and audio production.

Mountain Ops

It has been a busy two months in the Mtn Ops world.  Immediately following the season work was spent clearing the mountain of debris from the ice storm and putting away equipment for the year.  The groomers and other equipment are getting serviced. The Lift 4 operators building is nearing completion. This project is costing us far less than anticipated and will be completed with operating funds.  There have been numerous inspections including septic and underground storage tanks.  Inclement weather has delayed the start of outside work on the lift.  We have also spent considerable time discussing and gathering information about various projects including the snowmaking system, mountain mowing and the Birdcage project. 

Retail Shop

The Retail Shop spent April taking inventory and placing orders for the summer/fall.  They had a very busy spring with lots of happy customers.  Following some down time in May the store will reopen on a limited basis this summer.  We are also looking at the potential for a new online store platform. 

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