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Sale of Burke Mountain Resort could be complete later this year, says court-appointed receiver

A sign that reads Burke Mountain in front of a hotel
Lisa Rathke
/
Associated Press
Burke Mountain resort has been overseen by a court-appointed receiver since 2016 after its former owners were accused by federal regulators of misappropriating millions of dollars from investors.

A Northeast Kingdom ski resort caught up in the EB-5 scandal might be sold by the end of the year.

In a report filed in federal court in late June, Michael Goldberg, the court-appointed receiver in charge of Burke Mountain, wrote that he'd identified a party to serve as the initial bidder on the resort and that he hoped that the sale would be completed later this year. VTDigger first reported the news of the filing.

In a court filing last year, Goldberg said he’d received an initial offer to buy the resort.

More from Vermont Public: Unnamed buyer makes offer on Burke Mountain resort

In the recent filing, Goldberg wrote that the interested party, which he did not identify, would offer a “stalking horse” bid which would be the minimum price of the resort at an auction. Goldberg used a similar process to sell Jay Peak, which was also under receivership, two years ago. Jay Peak sold in 2022 for $76 million dollars to Pacific Group Resorts, Inc, a Utah-based ski conglomerate.

Burke Mountain, along with Jay Peak, were put into receivership in 2016 after the Securities and Exchange Commission accused the former resort owner Ariel Quiros and manager Bill Stenger of operating a “ponzi-like” scheme and misappropriating more than $200 million from investors using the EB-5 program. The federal program gives foreign investors green cards if they put money into development projects that generate jobs in economically depressed regions.

Qurios and Stenger used the federal program for projects across the Northeast Kingdom, including building a hotel at Burke Mountain and a water park at Jay Peak. Some of their proposed developments were never built, like a biotech facility in Newport — a project that federal prosecutors said was almost a total fraud.

More from Vermont Public: In exclusive interview, Bill Stenger discusses regrets in EB-5 investment fraud scandal

The proceeds from the sale of Burke Mountain will go towards repaying defrauded investors, Goldberg wrote in a court filing last year.

Quiros and Stenger pleaded guilty to federal criminal charges related to the fraud. Quiros is currently serving a five year prison sentence, and Stenger served about half of an 18-month sentence.

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Liam is Vermont Public’s public safety reporter, focusing on law enforcement, courts and the prison system.
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