August 29, 2015 (TTF Workshop Outline)

Town of Cranberry Isles - Transportation Task Force
Time Line for Ferry Service Implementation 8/26/2015

The town has been well serviced by ferry services for many years; however in the past two years, the ferry service operator’s performance has deteriorated to the point where the town’s Board of Selectmen (BOS) formed, in 2014, a Transportation Task Force (TTF) to study and recommend improvements.

After conducting a survey of 190 towns-­‐people, developing service specifications, and reviewing a number of operational models, the preferred structure would be modeled on the Isle au Haut Boat Service operation where the ferry service entity servicing the town would be a non-­‐profit corporation. This entity would bid the operation of the vessels, crew, maintenance, and administration of one consolidated operator servicing the Cranberry Isles to Northeast Harbor and Southwest Harbor.

The town would not run the service, as a non-­‐profit Board of Directors would be responsible for the service. The Board would consist of an experienced ferry operator, one Selectmen, an attorney, a businessman, and other year-­‐round and seasonal residents that had complementary skills and interest in a successful ferry service operation for the township.

The TTF sees this as a very viable option for our town. One of the main items is the “seed” to start the non-­‐profit/ferry service. Beal and Bunker (B&B) has stated they will discontinue all ferry operations by winter of 2015, and intend to sell their current operation and some of the vessels to the town. Alternatively the town may lease or purchase other vessels for a transitional service this winter, spring and summer, until the new non-­‐profit is up and running. The BOS has contacted the town’s attorney to identify an appropriate acquisitions attorney to act on its behalf in discussions with B&B and/or others on the acquisition cost, transfer of contracts and licenses, and temporary operation of the service till the new non-­‐ profit entity’s operator is selected.

A tentative timeline follows:

Aug. 15 to Sept. 15: Discussion and negotiation between B&B, other vessel sellers, and TTF on acquisition of vessels.

Oct. 1: TTF to issue interim operations plan from B&B or other acquisition to turn over to new non-­‐profit ferry service entity.

Oct. 15: Special Town Meeting to approve funds for acquisition including B&B or alternative vessel purchase or lease to include cost, legal and professional fees, and other costs of operation to forming the non-­‐profit entity.

Oct. 15: Town issues Request for Proposals (RFP) for ferry operations for winter, spring and summer

Nov. 1: TTF Interim service operation begins

Town of Cranberry Isles - Transportation Task Force
Time Line for Ferry Service Implementation 8/26/2015

Jan. 1: Non-­‐profit entity established and budget for 2016 finalized for presentation in a Warrant at the March 2016 Town Meeting.

May 1: TTF issues Request for Proposals (RFP) to ferry service operators for a five (or seven) year contract of operation.

July 31: Proposals due to TTF for ferry service operations contract Oct. 15: Non-­‐profit ferry service contract starts operation.