Even as phone service and internet service remained iffy on Monday, Mammoth Town officials used their cell phones to pull together information so they could start mediation with creditors this week, and that includes Town employee groups but not Mammoth Lakes Land Acquisition.
Less than a week after Councilman Skip Harvey called for open meetings and disclosure of current issues in Town government, the Council called for a closed session at 7am Wednesday morning.
There are two items on the agenda – a conference with Dave Wilbrecht on employee organization talks and the MLLA matter. Town Manager Dave Wilbrecht said that “once the budget projections and analysis are lined up” officials would go through mediation with creditors.
Right now, Wilbrecht said they are finalizing selection of a mediator, who, according to the Manager, “calls all the shots.” He said the Town is hopeful to start mediation this week.
Arrangements for that start were complicated on Monday by the Verizon service outage and disruption to phones, email and internet in Mammoth and other parts of Mono County.
Asked if the Town has heard anything from MLLA, Wilbrecht said he has heard of no communications from the holder of Mammoth’s nearly $43 million debt. A court writ was issued demanding full payment of that debt by June 30th. Publicly, Town officials say they are still hopeful MLLA will negotiate a settlement.
In fact, MLLA did make the Town a settlement offer a month ago. That offer called for agreement by April 30th and would demand of the Town an immediate payment of $2 million and $2.8 million per year for 30 years, with other terms.
Town officials issued a letter that the government has major money problems and they were restructuring everything which would also include paying MLLA. They have not revealed any further details. MLLA’s March letter criticized the Town for failure to come up with a figure that it would take to provide “essential services” and allow payment to MLLA.