OLYMPIC VALLEY, Calif. – The California State Controller’s office (SCO) on Wednesday handed down its review of the draft Comprehensive Fiscal Analysis (CFA) for the proposed incorporation of Olympic Valley, and confirmed that the initial fiscal study was not riddled with errors as proponents had claimed.
“This is yet another independent entity confirming that the proposed town of Olympic Valley is not financially feasible,” said Andrew Wirth, president and CEO of Squaw Valley Ski Holdings LLC, who also speaks on behalf of Save Olympic Valley (SOV).
State Controller’s Office Issues Review of Olympic Valley Incorporation Report; Draft Fiscal Study was Not Deeply Flawed as Proponents had Argued
SOV is a large group of local residents, homeowners, property owners and business leaders who have sought exclusion from the proposed town due primarily to the substantial financial risk associated with the proposed town. Businesses, properties and individuals seeking exclusion include: Squaw Valley Ski Holdings, Plumpjack/Newsom Properties, The Resort at Squaw Creek, Poulsen Family Properties, Dean and Sandra Hall Properties, Richie Goldman Properties, Dan Morgan Property, Heidi and Terry Deveau, and Ciro Mancuso Properties.
Placer County LAFCO sent the draft CFA to the state’s watchdog agency in August at the request of incorporation proponents, who paid $125,000 for the review. SCO’s response largely confirmed the findings of the initial fiscal study prepared by LAFCO’s independent consultant, RSG Consulting.
“IOV proponents requested and paid for the review because they argued that the CFA was deeply flawed. We now know their belief was incorrect because the State Controller validated most of the work performed by RSG Consulting,” Wirth said. “This review confirms that incorporation remains infeasible.”
Wirth said he fully expects IOV to continue pushing for incorporation using any excuse they can find in the SCO’s report to argue that incorporation is fiscally feasible.
The review by the SCO wasn’t the only analysis performed on the draft CFA. The Blue Sky Consulting Group was retained by the group opposing incorporation, Save Olympic Valley (SOV), to conduct an independent analysis. That study also determined that incorporation is not fiscally viable. Incorporating under these conditions creates huge risk for the people and businesses of Olympic Valley, and would make the entire region suffer.
Matthew Newman, Blue Sky Consulting’s cofounder, stated that the Controller’s Office review confirmed that the CFA was not fundamentally flawed as incorporation proponents had argued. “The SCO review largely upholds the key assumptions of the CFA,” he said.
“On issues from the development projections included in the CFA to the choice of comparable cities to estimates of insurance costs, the SCO review supported the initial findings of the CFA,” said Newman, adding that, “Incorporation remains infeasible.”
Incorporation proponents have routinely stated that they would withdraw their application if the town were not viable. “Let’s see if they make good on those promises,” Newman said.