Frequently Asked Questions

How will the airline program be funded?

If Yes2Air passes, the program will be funded by three sources:

  • Steamboat Ski Resort will increase their minimum contribution by 45% to $1.6 million if the proposed air tax is passed – Not funded by locals
  • Local Marketing District (LMD) which generates approximately $1.6 million through a 2 percent accommodations tax, paid entirely by visitors – Not funded by locals.

The smallest of the 3 funding sources is the proposed Yes2Air tax which equals 20 cents for every $100 of taxable goods sold, paid by visitors and locals. Estimated to generate $1.3 million

What happens if the Yes2Air tax doesn’t pass?

Without additional tax dollars, existing air reserves would be depleted in 2019. Without the necessary funds to meet MRGs the Steamboat air program would lose markets and flights.  This ultimately means fewer visitors resulting in fewer dollars flowing into our local economy.  

Why should I care about Yes2Air?

As a local of the Steamboat community, there is much to be gained through the air program and the subsequent air tax. When guests fly into Steamboat they spend on average $1345. Those dollars go directly into our community, not only with the actual purchase of goods and services, but much further. They include tips to for locals to collect and pay their bills, taxes to support our city services from police, fire and EMT, to street plowing, to parks and recreation. As a sales tax-based community, we depend on the influx of visitor dollars to keep our community thriving and fund future needs.  Voting Yes on 2A means supporting the air program so we may continue to attract airlines that guests want to use to fly to Steamboat for their winter vacations.  The proposed tax is a small investment with a big economic impact for our community.

Who benefits from the air program?

Everybody in Steamboat benefits from the air program. From the retail outlets to restaurants, services and amenities, construction workers to real estate agents, everyone wins when visitors can fly into Steamboat, spend their money and pay taxes to support our community needs.

Why is a general sales tax the right funding source?

Steamboat is a sales tax-based community; the more guests who visit the town, the more tax dollars are collected, the more funding our city and community has. Therefore, a general sales tax is absolutely the right funding source for the air program as it will be split between our guests and locals. This tax will be the smallest of the three funding sources, with the two larger contributors (the ski resort at $1.6 million and the Local Marketing District at $1.6) being paid entirely by guests. Locals will effectively be contributing a mere 15 - 17% to the overall air program, with 83 - 85% being paid for the by visitors and ski corp. Bottom line, visitors are paying the bulk of the air program; locals are being asked to make a small investment with a big economic impact.

Explain the private/public partnership.

We all share a stake in the economic health and vitality of our community and the air program is an example of a private/public partnership which benefits all of Steamboat.  The Steamboat Ski Resort, a private company, is working hand-in-hand with the community to make sure airlines bring high-value guests to Steamboat Springs. The resort’s contribution, the first funding source, will increase by 45% to $1.6 million, should the air tax pass. The next big funding source is paid for the guests, the public, through the Local Marketing District’s accommodations tax. The final funding source, a projected $1.3 million, will be split between locals and guests, and is a small public contribution with big economic impacts for Steamboat.

Why is it so expensive to fly through Steamboat/Hayden?

We do pay a premium to fly nonstop in and out of Steamboat. We are working with global carriers that have pricing and yield management policies that don’t change when dealing with a small market like Steamboat Springs.

Our ability to bring Alaska and JetBlue to Steamboat, as a direct result from the 2011 air tax, plays an important role in competitive pricing. As price conscious airlines, Alaska and JetBlue will put additional pressure on the legacy carriers to offer more competitive prices on nonstop flights to Steamboat.

Why doesn’t the ski resort pay more?

Steamboat Ski Resort is first in when it comes to financially supporting the community’s air program. As the first of the three potential funding sources, SSRC has committed to increasing its contribution by 45% to $1.6 million should the proposed air tax pass. The resort is also prepared to cover any shortfalls on the backend of the program, if necessary, with the passing of the Yes2Air tax (similar to the 2011 tax).
Additionally, SSRC supports the air program with national and international marketing efforts, spending millions of dollars annually to attract air visitors.

Why aren’t there more Summer flights?

During the summer, major airlines reallocate their fleets and resources to warm weather markets such as the Caribbean, Mexico and other beach destinations. Steamboat just isn’t a priority for the airlines during the summer months.

We frequently update this page with more commonly asked questions about Yes2Air. Check back soon for more information.

Vote Yes2Air on 2A in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.