Grand Mesa Nordic Council
April 11, 2023
Board: Dan Tille, Joe Ramey, Larry Gruel, Christine Noel, Marguerite Tuthill, Susie Attaway
Board Members Absent: John Traylor & Tom Ela
GMNC Staff: Christie Aschwanden, Melissa Newell, Beth Klein
Dan called the meeting to order and read the GMNC mission at 6pm.
I. Guest Comments. No guest comments.
II. March Meeting Minutes. Dan motioned to approve the March minutes, Joe seconded, all approved.
III. Treasurer Report. Christine provided the monthly financials report.
- For our March Dashboard: We continue to be in the black for year-to-date.
o Year-to-date income is ahead of last year’s but slightly behind budget.
o Year-to-date expenses are well ahead of last year’s.
o We simply have more costs this year than last year; these are issues that will be addressed in this year’s budget process which begins later this month.
o In our Finance Committee meeting last week, Christie mentioned that the adult programs are just over break-even overall, which meets one of her goals.
o And, as Christie mentions in her executive director’s report, our fundraising continues to be very strong this year.
● For insurance:
o Based on our perceived lack of undue risk, paired with the abundant use of third parties (i.e., Square, LGL, etc.), paired with the costs of coverage including the high deductible, paired with low payouts per occurrence (e.g., $10,000 for public relations; $25,000 for extortion), we have decided not to purchase additional cyber insurance coverage at this time.
The Board discussed the upcoming budget process. The Board will begin the budget process and aim to vote on next year’s budget at the June meeting. Tax work will officially begin in May, with the CPA submitting the return in October. The Fiscal year financials will be ready at the end of May and will be included in the Annual Report.
IV. Executive Director Report. Christie provided her written report, which was included in the Board packet. Christie shared that she met with the USFS last week about snowmobile incursions. The USFS will install more “No Snowmobiling” signs in the area for next season. Christie discussed the need for another parking lot on the other side of the road at Ward and those on-going discussions with the USFS. GMNC is waiting on the signed Master Development Plan from the USFS.
Christie received a request from the Gates Foundation for a site visit. This grant request was for $30,000. Christie is working on the Annual Report and will share a draft with the Board prior to the next meeting.
Christie shared some program highlights from the year, particularly how the Lessons program did well financially this year, a marked improvement compared to last year. Joe asked for details on what the difference is. Christie believes it was better organized this year. Susie highlighted how Program fee revenue was up CY compared to LY across the board.
The Board discussed initial prep needs for summer trail maintenance.
V. Events Report. Melissa provided her report on the year’s events. Melissa reviewed March snow’s impact on an increased number of canceling events. The events that did occur were very successful and well attended. The St. Patrick’s Day event was a big hit and raised a lot of money.
The REI Snowshoe Day was a good event and REI is looking forward to continuing this event with GMNC next year. Melissa reminded the Board that her folder on the Shared Drive includes an Event Budget spreadsheet detailing the costs of each event.
Delta’s end of season party will be held this Sunday, 2-4p, at the Yarrow Tap Room in Austen. The End of Grooming Season party at Countyline will be on April 30th. Costumes are highly encouraged.
Melissa & Christie shared how they are looking at strategies to better utilize trail ambassadors during big events or busy periods. And GMNC is starting to brainstorm how to build out the race series and broaden participation demographics.
Melissa has added the survey to social media, but Christie did ask Board members to distribute it out to folks to help collect more responses. Christie is aiming to present results at the May Board meeting. Christie shared some initial feedback received from the survey.
The Board discussed the potential for a Board retreat this year. A focused strategic session will help direct current size and momentum, and drive future growth of GMNC events.
VI. Operations Report. Joe provided his written report, which was included in the Board packet. Joe shared we are in full spring conditions now. He also highlighted how Operations is at 86% of its annual budget. This doesn’t include the recent cat repairs, but Operations is still expecting to come in under budget.
VII. Building Updates. Dan provided an update on the status of the building. The Board is pursuing an additional funding source. The current plan with the building is to break ground this fall, winterize the foundation, and then begin building when thaw allows it in 2024. This would mean the Board would be aiming for public comment in May, begin capital campaign at the same time. Board discussed how the spring weather will drive whether this plan proceeds.
Board discussed its next meeting, which will be held on May 23 in Delta.
Board then moved into Executive Session at 6:52pm.