Department of Conservation –
Ministers face new calls to push pause on the hasty sale of the North Island’s ski fields to private investors, says mayor.
Creditors have been told the Department of Conservation may lodge a claim against the insolvent Ruapehu Alpine Lifts over an estimated $100 million cost to remove the buildings and ski lifts from the maunga if the company is unable to resume operating. The effect of accepting this claim would be to make government a bigger creditor than the ANZ Bank, iwi, councils and life pass holders combined.
It comes after Newsroom revealed increased unhappiness among the 14,000 life pass holders, and iwi and hapū who are both kaitiaki of the mountain and bond holders over the Sky Waka gondola. Their combined voting clout on the creditors committee was looking increasingly liable to derail government officials’ plans to sell not-for-profit Ruapehu Alpine Lifts’ assets (and debts) to two consortiums of private investors.
“If a new entity takes over Ruapehu Alpine Lifts’ operations, Department of Conservation would expect them to take over the liability for removing infrastructure and remediating the land,” a Cabinet paper says.
The Mayor is concerned MBIE is being too hasty, and that’s his message to the Government. “That would be my personal view,” Kirton says. “It makes a lot of sense, in my view, to allow some freedom to get through the season. We’re bleeding as a community. “My gut feeling is that it’s in their best interest to do that with the current structure that we’ve got, and work through some of the issues over the next next 12 months.” He adds: “There are some issues that iwi haven’t been engaged with the process, and Department of Conservation has been working hard to try to alleviate that – we knew that.
Read the full article on NewsRoom: Conservation Dept can file $100m contingency claim to remediate Ruapehu skifields
supplied by Ruapehu Skifields Stakeholders Association