The lease dispute between Talisker and Park City Mountain Resort has taken a significant turn as Talisker Land Holdings yesterday issued an eviction notice to Park City Mountain. Lynn Ware Peek has more.
The five day “notice to quit” was issued Wednesday and sent to John Cumming, Chairman and CEO of Powdr Corp and Park City Mountain Resort attorney Alan Sullivan. It was issued by Talisker and signed by Vail Resort attorney Fiona Arnold. It states that Park City Mountain Resort is a tenant at will and its Landlord, Talisker, is now terminating that tenancy. It goes on to say that PCMR must leave the premises it now occupies as a tenant within five calendar days, which is by the end of the Labor Day weekend.
The eviction notice marks a new turn in the lease dispute between PCMR and Talisker which began when in April of 2011 Park City Mountain Resort, according to the dispute, failed to renew the lease of much of the land that the resort sits on. Talisker, in its statement says that despite its belief that the leases expired over two years ago, they have allowed PCMR to remain on the property. The statement goes on to say that as a condition to its continued occupancy Talisker has asked PCMR to pay a fair rent and, as it claims, the resort has repeatedly refused this request. The eviction notice says that while all structure, facilities and improvements affixed to the property, such as ski lifts will belong to Talisker, they are giving Park City Mtn Resort 60 days to remove personal property and equipment not affixed to the property.
The dispute took a recent turn when, according to the statement, attorneys representing Talisker discovered that the original lawsuit filed nearly a year and a half ago by PCMR, and asserts that its leases were still good, under a notice of extension they had sent to Talisker by April 30 of 2011. In a letter earlier this month, Talisker attorney John Lund said the letter was actually sent out May 2nd and had been backdated to April 30th, a move he suggested was an attempt to deceive the court. In a reply, PCMR's attorney Alan Sullivan said the backdating was a mistake, due to miscommunication between the lawyers and officials at PCMR and Powdr Corp, but wasn't part of any deliberate effort to deceive. Sullivan said they acknowledged the mistake to Talisker's attorneys over a year ago, And Sullivan said question of the letter's date isn't relevant to the issues now being considered by the Court. Attorney Lund asked Judge Ryan Harris for a conference to consider the issues raised by the backdated letter. In an entry last week, Judge Harris rejected that request, saying either party could file a motion if they wanted to pursue that issue.
In a prepared statement from Jenni Smith, President and General Manager of Park City Mountain Resort, she said, "Vail's eviction notice is nothing more than a bald faced attempt to circumvent the litigation already in process and interfere with our business. We will not give in to Vail's bullying and look forward to conducting business as usual for the 2013-14 season."