About The Cooperative
The Bear Valley Mountain Cooperative was an informed evolution of form and function. From the passionate desire of a few homeowners to see Bear Valley reach its full potential to the encouraging town hall meeting, the evolution has been both organic and cultivated. The Co-op exploratory team interviewed key individuals involved in the development of other alternatively managed ski areas including Mad River Glen Co-op, Bridger Bowl 501(c)4, Bogus Basin 501(c)3, and the Sugar Bowl homeowner model. The undeniable sense of ownership, ability to raise funds quickly, and less arduous process of legal and financial formation led to the final decision to form a cooperative.
To move Bear Valley forward while preserving its unique characteristics through community leadership and investment. The cooperative believes that Bear Valley's success is inextricably linked to the economic vitality of Bear Valley Village and the surrounding communities.
The Co-op was formed in early 2014 with an initial focus on buying and operating Bear Valley Mountain Resort's alpine skiing operation. After Skyline Resorts outbid the Co-op, and a one year partnership between the two companies, the Co-op began substantial research on member desires, recreational opportunities and the commercial ownership landscape in Bear Valley. In January of 2018 the Co-op membership approved an important referendum to refocus the board on a broader set of opportunities in and around Bear Valley village. The board conducted substantial research on year round recreational opportunities for investment and presented a three phase plan with specific projects outlined to its members at its August 2018 annual meeting. On August 29, the Board announced it had signed a letter of intent to acquire the Bear Valley Adventure Company and Cross Country with the intent to hold a member referendum in September on the deal and begin ownership by late Fall 2018.
Cost for Bear Valley Mountain Co-op membership
A membership share in the Bear Valley Mountain Cooperative is $2,500 for an individual which you pay only once. This share provides you with the right to vote; receive member benefits; and have a say in designing the future of Bear Valley. You can pay for this share up front, or over 36 months at $70/month with a $100 initial payment, but either way you receive membership benefits immediately upon joining.
The Co-op will continue to actively sell memberships in order to raise funds to continuously fulfill our mission via community leadership and investments. The membership may decide to raise the cost of membership in the future.
Members may also make additional investments in Bear Notes , also valued at $2,500, which pay an annual dividend established each year by the board, payable in credits which may be spent at participating Bear Valley businesses. For example, the board plans to issue Bear Bucks, which may be used to purchase products and services at Skyline Bear Valley, to Bear Note holders.The Bear Note is convertible to an equity share in the event of an acquisition of the Co-op. Each Bear Note holder, is only entitled to the single vote based on their original membership.
You can get your money back
You can sell your share back to the cooperative if you decide that you no longer are connected to Bear Valley or move away from the area (fee may apply and repayment may be delayed if funds are unavailable).
How it is organized
The Co-op is registering as a non-profit 501c(7) corporation with the IRS and is incorporated with the California Secretary of State. The board will form committees focused on specific areas of expertise: financial, operations, and membership using members that have expertise in those areas.
How it is governed
The members have elected a volunteer board of directors who normally each serve for 3 years to fulfill the fiduciary duty, duty of loyalty and duty of care to the co-op. The first board of directors had two members serving 3 year terms, two serving 2 year terms, and 2 serving 1 year terms. This enables to membership to have the opportunity to vote for 2 new directors each year, which ensures continuity in the board, while keeping it open for fresh perspectives each year. They must abide by the Articles of Incorporation and the Bylaws.