Jay Peak's iconic aerial trams need $4.5 million worth of work -- including overhauling the arms that attach the cabins to the cables above -- before the state will allow the system to operate this summer.
The repairs are a large expense amidst uncertainty about the resort's future after the Securities and Exchange Commission and the state filed charges accusing owner Ariel Quiros and chief executive officer Bill Stenger of massive fraud. The SEC said Quiros and Stenger misused $200 million from the EB-5 program, which allows foreign nationals to gain U.S. residency if they invest $500,000 in projects that create jobs in economically depressed areas.
On Thursday, Michael Goldberg, the federal receiver appointed to oversee Jay Peak in the wake of the SEC accusations, said he was planning to file a motion in federal court by Monday to gain approval for the expense.
"It kind of sucks that has to happen now," Goldberg said Thursday, shortly after flying back from Burlington, where he was meeting with Jay Peak subcontractors to discuss money owed to them by the resort.
Records obtained by the Burlington Free Press show the state's concerns over the condition of the tram began as early as last year, when the state Passenger Tramway Board brought in Doppelmayr, an international company that manufactures ski lifts, to provide an engineering assessment.
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