IVGID delays golf rate increases; raises Diamond Peak fees
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — General improvement district trustees discussed many topics from their packed agenda on Wednesday, including Diamond Peak Ski Resort season passes, ticket prices and golf rates.
Both the Mountain and the Championship golf courses are operating at a loss, mostly since rates haven’t been raised to keep up with market prices.
They estimate the break even amount is equal to an average of 40 rounds per person. Both courses are currently trending at an average of about 50 rounds per person.
Director of Community Services and Golf Darren Howard presented a new, potential pricing structure. Players could purchase 10- or 20-round, passes, or more. The more rounds they purchase up front, the bigger the discount. College students and juniors would still receive a deep discount since, as Howard said, “they are the future of the sport.”
The price increases that were proposed were substantial and many members of the public, including members who don’t normally comment, called in to oppose the increase.
While the board agrees that increases do need to be made, they agreed that the increase was too substantial.
One issue Howard brought up is that the board does not provide enough direction to venue operators about what kind of return on investment they are looking for, i.e. should the venues just break even or bring in a profit to offset capital costs.
The board asked Howard to bring back different price changes to the March 24 budget workshop.
Improvements to the courses were also approved during the meeting. The board unanimously approved cart path replacement at the Mountain Course, as well as driving range nets for both courses.
The cart paths have been a point of concern for many years. When the board approved purchase of new carts last year, the public said it wasn’t worth the cost until the paths could be upgraded since the poor quality was doing damage to the carts.
General Manager Indra Winquest said that at this point, the paths are posing a safety risk.
The nets also pose a safety risk. Howard said they have a 10-year lifespan and the ones they currently have are 15 years old. Holes appearing in the net pose a risk to any person or structure behind the range.
Both projects were approved unanimously.
The board also approved increases for tickets and passes for the 2021/22 season of Diamond Peak.
For non-picture pass holders there is an average increase of $50. The youth and senior passes are seeing an increase of up to an additional $200.
They are also removing mid week passes for non-picture pass holders.
There will be no increase for picture pass holders.
The board also voted to give Winquest spending authority of up to $50,000 for contracts to consultants to help update district policies. The updates and changes were made in the Moss Adams reports to increase transparency and efficiency of the district.
Trustee Kendra Wong felt $50,000 was too high and provided the only no vote on the item.
Finally, the board approved a payment of $20,000 to Erickson, Thorpe & Swainston for the Mark Smith v. IVGID lawsuit. This has been a controversial issue since the bill was for legal services that the board did not approve.
Board chair Tim Callicrate and Winquest attempted to negotiate with the firm to lower the bill. The board originally owed for $30,000 so this is a slightly better bill but members of the public thought the bill should be $0.
The board voted 4-1, with Trustee Sara Schmitz providing the no vote.
The next regular board meeting is scheduled for March 31.
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