Wednesday, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort sent an email asking for residents to reach out to elected officials about a discontinuation of START bus services.
Given the activity in elected officials email boxes, the public has been making their thoughts heard.
Officials at the resort sent the message out Wednesday evening and asked readers to email Teton County Commissioners and Jackson Town Councilors to ask them to reconsider the proposal to eliminate the private sector contribution to START for pass holders through the resort.
One comment said,” I cannot for the life of me think of a good reason to stop JHMR from offering bus passes to their season pass holders. This seems to be a poorly thought out action that is contrary to the mission of getting more cars off the roads in Teton County.”
Another resident said the bus service was, after losing elections for tax funds, continuing to fail in its efforts, “Sounds like START is shooting themselves in the foot. Not winning at SPET elections and now this? I hope someone has a plan to move things forward in a positive direction because these look like major set-backs for the county’s public transportation system.”
“Please make it easier to ride the bus, not harder!” one comment read. Another said simply, “Fund Start Bus.”
One resident even equated the elected officials to acting like the local cable TV company who stopped residents from watching the Super Bowl and the Olympics writing, “Ironically, you are taking a page directly out of the Charter/Spectrum playbook with this decision to not allow JHMR to purchase discounted START transportation & pass it on to pass holders, and that draconian position is to drop the service to advance your position. The only people to loose with this decision are the people of Teton County.”
In a statement, JHMR officials said, “Jackson Hole Mountain Resort has voluntarily purchases bus passes for season ski pass holders, as a benefit to the community as well as the pass holders in order to reduce the volume and number of cars on our valley roads during winter seasons. JHMR has done it now for about 15 years, expending over $100,000 last year alone, and this pass holder purchase program it has proven to reduce community traffic levels from what otherwise would have been even more single occupancy vehicle congestion. This voluntary pass holder purchase program is not a requirement of the 1997 resort master plan, it’s perhaps the only example of a large-scale voluntary initiative for transit success in our community. We can’t understand why START Bus would want to end this initiative, thereby increasing traffic and reducing funding for START Bus. To imagine that taking bus passes away would have any other effect than to increase frustrating traffic to locals and reduce funding for START Bus is illogical.”