The Mountain Times

°F Wed, April 16, 2014

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Killington Chamber ceases to fund winter shuttle

KILLINGTON - The Killington Chamber of Commerce will no longer provide funding for the free, late night, seasonal bus service along the Killington Road, announced Killington Chamber president Howard Smith recently. The free shuttle, which is operated by the Marble Valley Regional Transit District, has been jointly funded by the Killington Chamber, the Killington Resort, and Long Trail Brewing Co. since 2009.

Citing cost factors, shifting economic priorities, and the proliferation of free shuttle service that has become available through area hotels, restaurants and nightclubs over the past several years, Smith says the chamber's budget can no longer justify the annual $20,000 price tag.

"Free shuttle service has been a critical factor in our community's economic health, particularly in serving visitors and tourists to Killington during the busy winter season," says Smith. "Since we first became a financial partner in this service, many of our member businesses have established their own free shuttles, and they independently fund those fleets. When we looked at the numbers, and the ridership during the last year, we could no longer justify this large expenditure. We need to spend these dollars as wisely as we can."

MVRTD Executive Director Minga Dana was notified earlier this week of the decision. The free late night shuttle generally begins operation during the Thanksgiving weekend, with service on Saturdays and holidays during the regular ski season, providing transportation to and from the properties along the Killington Road.

Smith applauded longtime funding partner Long Trail Brewing Co. for their active and ongoing involvement in all areas of corporate social responsibility - particularly keeping roads safe. "We are extremely grateful to Long Trail Brewing for all of their efforts to discourage drunk driving, and will continue to support their initiatives and partner with them wherever we can. We all want the same thing - which is our guests to enjoy themselves in Killington, and get home safely."