Marysheva-Martinez responds to MLLA issues

Interim Town Manager Marianna Marysheva-Martinez

Marysheva-Martinez says the Town did proceed in good faith. MLLA's return to court, she said, "disturbed us, surprised us, and unnerved us."

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.


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9 Responses to Marysheva-Martinez responds to MLLA issues

  1. Ken Warner February 8, 2012 at 5:41 pm #

    “…officials did start a process a long time ago to determine long term revenue and expenses up to 5 years out.”

    This town’s economy depends entirely and solely on tourism. Tourism is our only product. Tourism depends largely on the weather. Forecasting revenue 5 years out on a product that depends largely on the weather is simply dreaming. It’s possible that we might have two or three more Winters like this one in the next 5 years as the Sun spot cycle peaks.

    So we in this town are dependent on the dreams and wishes of people who can only hope for the best and affect no other productive action. And then they complain that MLLA is being unfair and impatient.

  2. Hanes February 8, 2012 at 6:31 pm #

    It seems to me that MMM and the Council overplayed their hand. Ten months of reviewing finances and negotiating a settlement? Seems like more than enough time to get a handle on things. Once again, we are overmatched and out-foxed and are now scrambling. Mr. Wood, when you won your Council seat, I thought you stated that this would never happen to the Town again on your watch…?

  3. Delta February 8, 2012 at 7:55 pm #

    What? The Town withdrew the offer AFTER it was rejected? Somehow I don’t think that’s what really happened. How much is Ms. Marysheva-Martinez getting paid to float these silly comments? Too much, I’m thinking. And let’s not forget the big number. I believe that the interest on that $40 mil judgment is $4 mil a year, right? And attorney’s fees were how much on top of that? Honestly, was more delay ever in the Town’s best interests? Time to get rid of all the so-called negotiators who created this latest mess, and all the Town Council members who continue to violate the Brown Act by meeting in closed session. We the People are the ones paying for this! The real issue for the Town is moving forward without further delay.

    • Benett Kessler February 8, 2012 at 9:22 pm #

      FYI – the original court judgment was $30 million. Interest at 7% adds up to about $2.5 million a year or more. With interest and attorneys fees, the amount is around $42 million now.

    • upthecreek February 8, 2012 at 11:14 pm #

      @ Delta
      “We the People are the ones paying for this!”

      Can you please tell me where these so called “people” are?




    • P&B February 9, 2012 at 8:17 am #

      The Town management/administration/politicians have had the opportunity to demonstrate to the citizens repeatedly their professional expertise (sorry..I’m laughing so hard at what I just typed that I can’t go on!!!!)

      The reality is that they are the ones laughing at us because we continue to put up with it.

      • Rob February 9, 2012 at 10:19 am #

        and continue to pay 3m while the interest piles up on the debt.

        Can it get any worse?

  4. Long arm of the law February 10, 2012 at 6:33 pm #

    It’s too bad that a previous town council signed this contract with MLLA and left the bag with the current city council. The only real people that will suffer are the residents of Mammoth. I wrote to the the Mammoth Town Council back then saying that this was a bad idea, they didn’t listen.

    • Hanes February 10, 2012 at 11:44 pm #

      Lest not forget that two of our current Town Council members were part of the Council’s from that past – Mr. Eastman and Mr. Wood – so the long arm does not need to be that long… problem is that these two were voted back in June 2010…


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