The events surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic continue to evolve rapidly. Sitnasuak Native Corporation’s dedication and service to the safety, health and well-being of our employees, Shareholders and communities remain strong. In these unparalleled times, several federal, state and local governments and health officials continue to classify some of our operations as essential activity, and we are proud to be able to serve.
Our fuel business, convenience store and our title companies are considered essential because of the services they provide within their communities. Our Puerto Rico operations are also considered essential as they continue to manufacture and produce personal protection equipment for the military. While we are working to help ensure uninterrupted access to the products and services our Shareholders, customers and communities need in these difficult times, we are operating with reduced staff and limited capacity and productivity.
SNC is taking appropriate precautions and implementing safeguards to protect our employees while they continue to provide services. We have increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting facilities with special attention to common areas, we are following social distancing practices and we are implementing other measures consistent with specific requirements and guidance from health authorities. Many of our employees continue to work remotely from home while our Anchorage and Nome offices remain closed.
We have received inquiries from Shareholders regarding an early spring dividend distribution. The SNC Board of Directors recently met to consider this issue among others affecting our Shareholders and companies. After reviewing and considering the uncertainty of the current economic conditions for SNC, the Board has made the difficult but financially responsible decision to not declare a distribution at this time. While we are certain that our businesses will endure this pandemic, recent projections indicate a negative impact on our net income for 2020. Given this, being conservative at this time will place us in the best position to effectively manage our businesses during this pandemic while continuing to focus on our strategy of growing and diversifying our businesses for long-term success. Through this approach, we will be best able to provide dividends that are sustainable and consistent with our payout policy.
Looking ahead, we will continue to monitor the situation closely and act with urgency. Our dedicated employees in Alaska, the lower 48 and Puerto Rico will continue to do their best to serve our Shareholders and customers and the needs of our communities during this unprecedented time. Please stay safe and well, and feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.
Barb (Qasuġlana) Amarok
Chair, SNC Board of Directors
Charles E. Fagerstrom