Charlotte Pass lease extended

Charlotte Pass Snow Resort.

Charlotte Pass Snow Resort.

THE lease agreement between Charlotte Pass Village PTY LTD (CPV), operator of Charlotte Pass Snow Resort, and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has been extended until October 31, 2017.

CPV confirmed on Tuesday that it would accept an offer from the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) to extend the current Charlotte Pass Head Lease for three snow seasons and that it will be offering this extension to all 11 lodges (sub-lessees) that are covered under the Charlotte Pass Head Lease.

Marketing and Guest Services Manager for Charlotte Pass Snow Resort Christine Parker thanked those who had supported the resort in reaching the outcome.

"We have been overwhelmed and humbled by the public support. It really shows how many people join us in being passionate about Charlotte Pass and wanting to make sure that Charlotte Pass remains the special place it is, a true alternative to the big resorts," she said.

NSW Office of Environment and Heritage Chief Executive Terry Bailey said the NSW Government would conduct a competitive market process to secure a long term lease beyond October 2017.

However, CPV want NPWS to enter direct negotiations for a new lease, rather than going to tender.

A press release issued by Charlotte Pass called on the Minister for the Environment to instruct the NPWS to "take appropriate steps to commence direct negotiations with CPV for a new lease on similar terms and conditions to the leases offered to Perisher Ski Resort and other lessees in the Perisher range."

According to CPV, leases were renewed with lessees in the Perisher Range Management Unit in 2008 by dealing directly with the lessees, not a competitive selection process.

The press release says when CPV was purchased by the current owner in June 2007, it was told that if it complied with the terms of the lease to the satisfaction of the NPWS and with the Kosciuszko National Park Plan of Management, it would be offered a new lease.

According to CPV, NPWS advised that it would not be proceeding with direct negotiations for a new lease in March 2014.

"CPV confirms that NPWS is still refusing to discuss entering into direct negotiations for a new lease for Charlotte Pass. There has still been no reason provided as to why direct negotiations were abandoned in March 2014," the press release said.

The NPWS says renewing the current commercial head lease for the Charlotte Pass Village Pty Ltd company without undertaking an open and transparent process would be inconsistent with NSW Government procurement and probity principles.

"There is nothing in the situation with Charlotte Pass Village Pty Ltd that would support directly negotiating with only one commercial party for a new long-term lease," NPWS says.

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