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Trail Crew Laid Off

Nov. 25, 2019, 2:44 p.m.
Posts: 82
Joined: March 13, 2017

Just ran into Digger and Pat working on Fromme, sounds like the whole trail crew is laid off as of the end of the month, rehiring people in April.

Be sure to say hi to the guys if you see them, some of them may not be back in April if they are lucky enough to find other work that is not seasonal.

When you are riding this winter, be a good neighbor, stop to drain a puddle or two. The trails are going to take a beating with no maintenance through the rainy season.

Nov. 25, 2019, 5:32 p.m.
Posts: 166
Joined: Dec. 6, 2017

Do they get laid off every winter?

Nov. 25, 2019, 10:07 p.m.
Posts: 378
Joined: Nov. 25, 2013

Unfortunately I was out of town, but was this brought up or discussed at the NSMBA AGM last week?

Nov. 25, 2019, 11:33 p.m.
Posts: 82
Joined: March 13, 2017

I wasn't there either, but I understand that it was mentioned in passing. 

I don't think they have been laid off in the past, but it sounds like the NSMBA doesn't have any budget to keep any of them through the winter this year.

Somebody with more information can correct me, I don't have all the details, just passing on what I heard from the guys.

Nov. 26, 2019, 6:54 a.m.
Posts: 182
Joined: Feb. 13, 2016

If they didn't get laid off previous years and they did this year due to budgetary issues then I want a copy of the latest financials because I believe NSMBA sold more memberships this year than ever before?! (Maybe I'm wrong). Wish my wife had not had a mandatory work meeting during this year's AGM, I was all set to go but had to pick up the kids from their activities instead.

Nov. 26, 2019, 7:13 a.m.
Posts: 568
Joined: Nov. 23, 2002

They may not have had as much grant and/or sponsorship money this year which has accounted for a big chunk of their budget in previous years.

Nov. 26, 2019, 11:16 a.m.
Posts: 1354
Joined: Feb. 17, 2009

I can speak for the years that I was on the board.  From 2013 onward, we had some trail builders on payroll over the winter.  At the time there was no formal trail crew of such a significant compliment, so there weren't as many people splitting the pie.

We had Mark (as ED and lead trail builder), Digger and Pat working through the winter, and other guys would come on/off as budget allowed. Remaining builders were all contracted through the TAP program.

Nov. 26, 2019, 1:30 p.m.
Posts: 30
Joined: June 9, 2017

Yes, trail crew will be taking the winter off. The current schedule and budget sees re-hiring some full time crew at the end of Feb/early March (the 2020 budget has not yet been reviewed or approved by the board). This was brought up during the AGM - thanks to everyone who was able to attend, and for those who had other commitments or just weren't able to be there, the presentation (incl. consolidated financials) will be out with the next eNews.

The past three years saw significant increases in the size of seasonal trail crew, and the year round trail crew (and other staff). While revenues have been increasing year over year, it isn't currently enough to maintain our level of spending (we've operated at an annual loss starting in 2017). In my opinion, the trails very much reflect this - capital has been turned into assets. While having the crew year round is amazing, its not currently a model we can afford to maintain indefinitely. 2020 will see us working to increase our volunteer leverage & engagement, along with other changes to continue to ensure the Association remains relevant, vibrant, and financially stable for the foreseeable future. And, hopefully, with continued hard work and determination, revenue will continue to grow, and we'll be able to have a year round trail crew again in the near future. Given the levels of trail use we're seeing year round now (did anyone try to park at Fromme on Sunday?!), our trails need the constant work. We'll staff up/down with additional trail crew as budgets, projects, and weather/seasonality require.

Yes, it was a record year for membership, but membership dollars are under 25% of our annual revenues (& that $ figure includes Trail Boost sales); check the AGM presentation when its released for the full breakdown. On that note, for those who missed the AGM, individual adult membership pricing is increasing to $50 for 2020. If we maintain the same number of members, and people continue to purchase Trail Boosts at similar rates, this will increase gross revenue by a bit under 5%. We'll still be the cheapest membership of the big three in the Sea to Sky (NSMBA, SORCA, WORCA) by $10. Membership isn't just about revenue, though (hence why we've kept the price lower than many comparables), the membership number is often the critical factor that is used to determine grant allocations, engage sponsors, and importantly, advocate for mountain biking with elected officials and government staff.

EDIT: I should add; if you'd like to continue to see the level of trail crew work that's been happening for the past 3-ish years, the way to do that is with your wallet, and/or time. Your dollars matter, and sponsorship dollars matter if that's a thing at your place of employment. Fern level starts at $500, which is pretty palatable for many businesses - and it includes four memberships. 2020 Memberships are for sale, Giving Tuesday is coming (and you need to sort out your tax problem anyway)... there's no shortage of ways to participate. (we've already sold more 2020 memberships than there were members in 2011)


 Last edited by: cooperquinn on Nov. 27, 2019, 3:27 p.m., edited 4 times in total.
Nov. 28, 2019, 12:05 p.m.
Posts: 182
Joined: Feb. 13, 2016

Thanks for clarifying that Cooper.

Nov. 28, 2019, 1:34 p.m.
Posts: 181
Joined: March 14, 2017

#nodignoride.... maintain the trails you ride and everything is in a better place.


 Last edited by: LoamtoHome on Nov. 28, 2019, 1:35 p.m., edited 1 time in total.
Nov. 28, 2019, 8:08 p.m.
Posts: 82
Joined: March 13, 2017

Posted by: LoamtoHome

#nodignoride.... maintain the trails you ride and everything is in a better place.

This sounds good in theory......

Nov. 29, 2019, 7:19 a.m.
Posts: 105
Joined: March 1, 2017

Posted by: TonyJ

Posted by: LoamtoHome

#nodignoride.... maintain the trails you ride and everything is in a better place.

This sounds good in theory......

LOL yeah.... I work on a trail most mornings and to get there I have to walk along an access trail which is used a lot by MTBers to get back to the main road. Sometimes there will be a small tree down over the trail that is easy to move out of the way by hand. As a social experiment I tend to leave the tree where it is and see how long it takes someone to move it as one has to get off ones bike to get over it anyway. It'll often be there for a couple of weeks! Sigh......

Nov. 29, 2019, 4:42 p.m.
Posts: 181
Joined: March 14, 2017

this is not surprising at all... 95% of riders don't give back and have a mentality that "someone will fix it".   Take a look at how many people are out riding in a rainstorm vs. people cleaning drains.

Nov. 29, 2019, 9:41 p.m.
Posts: 25
Joined: Aug. 6, 2004

Posted by: cooperquinn

Yes, trail crew will be taking the winter off. The current schedule and budget sees re-hiring some full time crew at the end of Feb/early March (the 2020 budget has not yet been reviewed or approved by the board). This was brought up during the AGM - thanks to everyone who was able to attend, and for those who had other commitments or just weren't able to be there, the presentation (incl. consolidated financials) will be out with the next eNews.

The past three years saw significant increases in the size of seasonal trail crew, and the year round trail crew (and other staff). While revenues have been increasing year over year, it isn't currently enough to maintain our level of spending (we've operated at an annual loss starting in 2017). In my opinion, the trails very much reflect this - capital has been turned into assets. While having the crew year round is amazing, its not currently a model we can afford to maintain indefinitely. 2020 will see us working to increase our volunteer leverage & engagement, along with other changes to continue to ensure the Association remains relevant, vibrant, and financially stable for the foreseeable future. And, hopefully, with continued hard work and determination, revenue will continue to grow, and we'll be able to have a year round trail crew again in the near future. Given the levels of trail use we're seeing year round now (did anyone try to park at Fromme on Sunday?!), our trails need the constant work. We'll staff up/down with additional trail crew as budgets, projects, and weather/seasonality require.

Yes, it was a record year for membership, but membership dollars are under 25% of our annual revenues (& that $ figure includes Trail Boost sales); check the AGM presentation when its released for the full breakdown. On that note, for those who missed the AGM, individual adult membership pricing is increasing to $50 for 2020. If we maintain the same number of members, and people continue to purchase Trail Boosts at similar rates, this will increase gross revenue by a bit under 5%. We'll still be the cheapest membership of the big three in the Sea to Sky (NSMBA, SORCA, WORCA) by $10. Membership isn't just about revenue, though (hence why we've kept the price lower than many comparables), the membership number is often the critical factor that is used to determine grant allocations, engage sponsors, and importantly, advocate for mountain biking with elected officials and government staff.

EDIT: I should add; if you'd like to continue to see the level of trail crew work that's been happening for the past 3-ish years, the way to do that is with your wallet, and/or time. Your dollars matter, and sponsorship dollars matter if that's a thing at your place of employment. Fern level starts at $500, which is pretty palatable for many businesses - and it includes four memberships. 2020 Memberships are for sale, Giving Tuesday is coming (and you need to sort out your tax problem anyway)... there's no shortage of ways to participate. (we've already sold more 2020 memberships than there were members in 2011)

"2020 will see us working to increase our volunteer leverage & engagement"

Good news to keep trails maintained year round.

Nov. 29, 2019, 10:11 p.m.
Posts: 82
Joined: March 13, 2017

Posted by: Silk

"2020 will see us working to increase our volunteer leverage & engagement"

Good news to keep trails maintained year round.

This sounds good in theory....................................................................................

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