Mammoth Lakes Tourism Board discusses joint marketing venture with the LA Kings, MUF, air service, TOT
As of January 3, Mammoth Lakes Tourism (MLT) Executive Director John Urdi reported that Mammoth Resorts was in negotiations with the Los Angeles Kings over a contract for a joint marketing venture to be funded by the Town of Mammoth Lakes (TOML), MLT, and Mammoth Resorts.
At last month’s MLT Board meeting, TOML Parks and Recreation Director Stu Brown reported that the TOML currently has a one-year marketing agreement with the LA Kings for this year.
In The Sheet’s December 9 story, “We Are All Kings,” Lunch reported that Brown had announced that MLT, the TOML and Mammoth Resorts had partnered to fund a six-year expansion and extension of the TOML’s current marketing agreement with the Kings. According to Brown, the three entities had agreed to split the cost of that agreement: $2 million, with Mammoth Resorts paying 66 percent of the cost, MLT 30 percent, and the Town of Mammoth Lakes 4 percent. In return, the Kings agreed to contribute $1 million toward the construction of the Multi-Use Facility (MUF) at Mammoth Creek Park West, also known as The Park.
At Wednesday’s Board meeting, Urdi said, “There were some questions about the length of the contract with the new company [KSL-Aspen]… A six-year contract is a big deal.” Urdi said the contract is still being worked out, but that, “Other concerns have been brought up with regard to the location of the rink.”
Urdi said he was an “observer” at a meeting last week regarding the location of the MUF following the TOML’s purchase of the Shady Rest Parcel. “Hart Howerton, who did a lot of work for the Town via the Mountain, thought the rink should be in that parcel. At the time, the Town didn’t own the parcel, so now they are having some discussions back and forth on that,” said Urdi. When asked to clarify, Urdi said that “they” referred to the TOML and Mammoth Resorts.
In an email on Wednesday, January 3, TOML Public Works Director Grady Dutton said “The Town of Mammoth Lakes is in no way considering relocating the Multi-Use Facility project from Mammoth Creek Park West. We are continuing to make great strides on the final design and expect to be before Town Council in May with updated estimates, based on actual bids to the extent possible.”
With regard to the Shady Rest Parcel, Dutton said, “The Town of Mammoth Lakes is expecting to execute a Purchase Agreement for the Shady Rest Parcel at any time. That purchase is based on current zoning and land use.” The Shady Rest Parcel is currently zoned for Affordable Housing, which does not permit construction of an ice rink or other municipal buildings.
Mammoth Lakes Tourism has committed to funding $600,000 of the $2 million marketing agreement with the Kings. MLT Board member Sean Turner expressed his concern that MLT’s interests be adequately represented in the contract negotiations at Wednesday’s board meeting, saying, “I think we’re going to want to have legal counsel that has experience with the sort of very big-picture deals that are being struck here… that understands this.”
Urdi said that Mammoth Resorts will have a contract with The LA Kings, and that MLT and the Town of Mammoth Lakes will likely operate under Memorandums of Understanding with Mammoth Resorts. Urdi said he expected to “move forward with something in next month.”