In response to Mammoth Lakes Land Acquisition’s court petition for its $42 million, Mammoth’s Financial Consultant Marianna Marysheva-Martinez paints a picture of the Town of Mammoth Lakes moving forward in good faith, dealing with growing revenue issues and negotiating the large debt.
Martinez maintains that the Town did move forward diligently with MLLA and in good faith. MLLA officials accused the Town of bad faith, saying the Town failed to come up with a counter offer in spite of public statements to the contrary. “The facts are,” said Martinez, “that we gave an offer December 1. MLLA responded on December 14, and they rejected our offer. When we received new financial information, we withdrew that earlier offer after it was rejected.”
Martinez said that now the Town has a baseline for finances, can combine all obligations and address them “holistically”, but she says nothing has changed. Mammoth still wants to negotiate a settlement with MLLA. “We asked them to give us a little time to address MLLA and the rest of our operations,” said Martinez. After 10 months of reviewing finances and finally negotiating, MLLA apparently ran out of patience.
Martinez said that MLLA’s abrupt return to court to collect the $42 million “disturbed us, surprised us and unnerved us,” she said. Asked if the Town has investigated the possibility of securing payment to MLLA through a judgment bond, Martinez said that the Town’s research revealed that they need a settled on amount and plans for repayment before they can go to the rating agencies to work on a bond. “The financing is out there,” she said.
Back to the finances of town government. Martinez said that officials did start a process a long time ago to determine long term revenue and expenses up to 5 years out. She said the Town will look at these pieces and come up with a road map for Mammoth’s future.
The Town did send MLLA a letter on Tuesday to make it clear Mammoth wants to continue negotiations. Now, the Town waits for MLLA’s response. Attorneys for the Town must gear up to respond to the court petition to force Mammoth to pay the whole $42 million.