Contractors offered partial payment amid fraud allegations

Markets Associated Press

A receiver overseeing the Jay Peak ski resort following allegations of massive fraud by its owner will offer contractors partial payment for unpaid bills.

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In a court motion approved Wednesday, receiver Michael Goldberg said contractors may either take a 33 percent payment and get the rest when the properties they worked on sell or get a total of 60 percent of the amount owed, The Burlington Free Press reported (http://bfpne.ws/2j8dNm5 ).

Goldberg said he reserves the right to require some contractors to take the first option if too many opt for the second option, "which may require too much cash."

The money is coming from a $13.3 million settlement with Citibank.

Contractors for a partially built Jay Peak project and the Burke Mountain resort hotel allege they are owed $6 million, Goldberg said.

Jay Peak Resort owner Ariel Quiros and former resort president Bill Stenger were accused by Vermont and by the Securities and Exchange Commission of misusing $200 million raised from foreign investors.

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Stenger has settled with the SEC. Lawyers for Quiros, a Miami businessman, have said he will be cleared of wrongdoing.

Republican Gov. Phil Scott said in statement on Wednesday, the day before he took office, that he was happy with the court's decision to approve the partial payments to contractors.

"This progress is a welcome step towards ensuring small businesses are compensated for the work they provided as fairly and as quickly as possible," he said.

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Information from: The Burlington Free Press, http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com