Sunday, April 17, 2016

Spring Hawk

The hawks are here year round but the ground squirrels pop up in the Spring, hence my fence sitter... looking for lunch...

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Powering up... or down... letter to the editor

First let me say I think the Power Plant has targeted the right demographic. We have great programs for our kids up to age 18 and then we throw them out of paradise. Multi-generational we are not.

Despite Mr. Cook’s assertion that transparency is paramount it appears the Power Plant has no business plan or at least not one which they wish to share with the public.

Their primary for profit partner, Aspen Brewing Co., appears to have a low profit potential- a conclusion from Duncan Clauss' remarks at the presentation that ABC’s profit margin is low. If the ABC cannot generate 80-100% of the first year’s expenses including the costs for the incubator space then they are not the right partner for the job. The City would wind up propping up an established low profit business as well as the unspecified starter businesses in their proposal. To put it more simply why have a “for profit” partner if they are not covering the expenses?

When pressed by Angie Callen the presenters changed their assertion that the Power Plant was a

to a “not for profit” (hobby). 

What if they don’t get their liquor license? What if they are unable to fill the start up desks?  If the reverse happens where do the “extra" revenues go? How much revenue do they have to generate to sustain the concept and where will this come from? Right now the sustainability - according to the Power Plant- depends on what the City would charge for rent. If they haven’t provided numbers to the City of what it takes to achieve sustainability then they haven’t run the numbers. In a hobby you don’t have to run the numbers in a business- you do- you run the numbers again and again until you find a working model and work towards that goal.

Add to this that the Power Plant is no longer offering to foot the bill for $700K of renovation ... remind me what the advantages are again?

Finally, when David Houggy asked about benchmarks it was revealed that there has been no discussion of oversight- either from the City or within the Consortium.

This should have been an easy presentation with answers at the ready for predictable questions. Instead what we got was a fluffy cloud of “what we need in Aspen…” a cursory nod to a "vocal minority" and a reaffirmation how much everybody loves living here.

Yep, I love living here too.

 I also have pretty solid experience of what it takes to stay here.  

I haven’t heard anything from the Power Plant which leads me to believe they can sustain themselves, much less offer sustainability to other start ups.

Get your heads out of the clouds boys. Do better next time.