In the Town of Mammoth Lakes, it’s a broken record – nothing new with MLLA, the holders of the ominous $43 million debt owed by the Town. What officials say they do know is that inability to pay off that debt by June 30th will lead to a fiscal emergency and bankruptcy unless settlement comes first. Tuesday night at a special meeting two of the Town’s experts, officials will discuss the major budget issues and the MLLA judgment.
Town Manager Dave Wilbrecht said that at Tuesday’s meeting, which starts at 6pm in Suite Z, Attorney Zack Clement and retired judge Bill Greendyke, both of the law firm of Fullbright and Jaworski, will talk to the public and the Council about their credentials and will answer questions from the public, according to Wilbrecht. He said they would not speak to specifics about the dispute with MLLA since that is still in progress.
The Town Manager said officials are encouraging members of the public to come and ask questions. Mammoth citizens have asked Sierra Wave Media what will happen if the Town does not pay $43 million by June 30th, as demanded in an issued court writ. Manager Wilbrecht said the attorneys will speak to that Tuesday. Pressed for his understanding of the consequences, Wilbrecht said, “If we get to the end of mediation and haven’t resolved the problem and the Writ of Mandate is due, there’s no way the Town can pay it. We would then be in a fiscal emergency,” he said. “The Town Council would have to make decisions at that point. I don’t know the exact steps toward bankruptcy,” said Wilbrecht, “but this is in our minds.”
Wilbrecht added that Town officials will start official mediation with creditors on Thursday. This includes contractors and employees but not MLLA. The special meeting of the Mammoth Lakes Town Council starts at 6pm Tuesday in Suite Z. Tourism Director John Urdi will make a presentation regarding the impact of tourism on Mammoth Lakes and presumably argue for continued marketing in the face of the Town’s financial crisis.
Immediately after Urdi’s discussion, the Council will go into talks about the long-term fiscal projections and a restructuring plan to address what officials describe as the “baselines fiscal issues and the MLLA judgment.”