Caledonia County Snowmobile Trail Club Meeting Minutes
January 4, 2012
The January meeting of the Caledonia County Snowmobile Trail Club was called to order at 7:05pm by President Ken Gammell.
Directors present: Bob Farmer, Harold Flanders, Ken Gammell, Ray Heath, Mike OHara, Marvin Olson, Ben Robinson, Bonnie Raboin, Dale Rowell, Rod & Kathy Smith, and Dennis Towle
Directors absent: Jim Carey, Bob Dexter
Dennis Towle made a motion that was seconded by Marvin Olson to accept the secretarys minutes as printed. The motion was adopted.
The membership report was printed on the back of the agenda. The total of TMAs sold is 644. A discussion followed about the possible explanation for the lower sales numbers. Ken Gammell noted that the TMA sales are not down all over the state as would be expected. Mike OHara thought many of the clubs in the Tropical Storm Irene areas had requested help repairing their trails, which prompted people to join the clubs they were helping to recover. Since the Northeast Kingdom did not fare as badly as other areas of the state with Tropical Storm Irene, the attention has been focused on southern and central Vermont. Bonnie Raboin felt the biggest factor was the lack of snow.
It was generally agreed that when the snow comes and riding is available, membership sales will increase. Until there is adequate riding, the members are waiting to see what kind of winter this will be. If the snow cover improves and the riding is available, everyone agreed the sales would jump back up to near normal levels.
1. Groomer Insurance Policy
Mike OHara gave the groomer insurance policy to Bonnie Raboin.
2. New Drag
Bob Farmer reported that the new drag is hooked up and the cutter bar is on it. The crew tried the lights but the wattage was wrong so blew out all the bulbs. Bob stated that Josh Nelson is going to request that Maxey send two lights and mounts to replace the ones that were damaged. The tool box is in place. The cover is also on the pan.
The subject of a publicity photo op for the new drag, to show the local area the investment the Trail Club is making to help the economy of the area, was discussed. Mike OHara stated that he had contacted Darcie McCann, of the Northeast Kingdom Chamber of Commerce, about the new drag. The Chamber was in the process of moving into their new offices but agreed a promotional article was needed when there is snow to use the drag.
Bob Farmer asked about selling the Mogul Master drag. It was suggested to send a notice to the VAST News. The details were discussed and decided to ask for $4500 or best offer. The drag is a 2001 model. It is 9x18 with either a gooseneck or pintel hitch and is a dual action drag.
1. VAST Military Appreciation Ride Sponsorship
Ken Gammell explained the various levels of sponsorship available for the Military Appreciation Ride. The ride will be held February 25, 2012 in South Woodstock, Vermont. Last year the Trail Club donated at the “Club Sponsor” level of $50, which lists those donating in the VAST newsletter and on the VAST website. Dennis Towle made a motion that was seconded by Mike OHara to once again donate to the VAST Military Appreciation Ride as a “club sponsor” for $50. The motion was adopted.
2. Food for Hope
Dennis Towle suggested participating in the Dunkin Donuts “Food for Hope” event next Christmas. The Trail Clubs name would be given out over the local radio station with a challenge to the other snowmobile clubs to make a donation of an equal or greater amount. The event is the second Saturday of December and is part of St. Johnsburys Victorian Christmas celebration. Bonnie Raboin stated that she and her husband always attend and would make the challenge in the Trail Clubs name for the 2012 season.
1. Landowner Permission Forms
Bob Farmer asked the club had new landowner permission forms for Bob Audette and Dwayne Passut. Ray Heath stated that Bob Audette had told him the trail would be alright for this year but might be useable for next year too, depending on the sale of the proposed housing development. Ray further stated that he had met the new owners of the trailer park. Ray felt they would be fine to work with regarding the snowmobile trail.
2. Trail Construction Reimbursement
Bob Farmer asked if the club had received the reimbursement from VAST for the relocation and extra work to get the trails open for the season. It was stated that Trails Administrator, Alexis Nelson, had all the information. Mike OHara stated that he had spoken with Alexis Nelson and learned that there is a small amount of emergency funding remaining. Ken Gammell did not think Ray Heaths reimbursement for the East St. Johnsbury trail had come back as yet.
3. New Drag Grant
Ken Gammell did not think the Trail Clubs grant-in-aid check for the new groomer had come. The checks normally go to the club president and Ken did not have the check yet. Bob Farmer stated he had submitted all the paperwork to VAST so now all that can be done is wait.
4. GPS Units for Groomers
Kathy Smith asked about the proposed GPS tracking domes to be installed on all groomers operating on the VAST trails. Mike OHara and Ken Gammell stated that the GPS units are part of a grant VAST is trying to obtain so that it is easier to track when and where the grooming is being completed.
5. Henry Whipple Memorial Trail
The proposed Henry Whipple Memorial Trail is being spearheaded by Henrys son, Phillip. The Whipple family will provide the sign and is working with Don Glover to finalize the project. It was agreed the most visible location would be on either side of Exit 22 off of I-91.
6. Open Riding Weekends
Ken Gammell reported that the last weekend of January 2012 will be open for riders with registrations and insurance in Maine and New Hampshire to ride on VAST trails without a TMA. Canada will also be having an open weekend on February 17 & 18, 2012.
The next meeting of the Caledonia County Snowmobile Trail Club will be held on February 1, 2012 beginning at 7:00pm at Ray Heaths office.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:00pm.
Kathy E. Smith