Central Ave. Grill’s fate still uncertain

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Courts: Judge’s decision Thursday on downtown eatery not yet released

By Carol A. Clark

A number of parties are awaiting the results of a meeting that took place Thursday in Albuquerque between attorneys for Central Avenue Grill owners Min and Monica Park, attorneys for the restaurant’s landlords C1C2 Investments of Daytona Beach, Fla., and Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert Jacobvitz.

The judge’s decision, on whether the Park’s downtown property lease remains intact, has not been released.

Park explained in a previous interview that due to the ups and downs in the Los Alamos economy over the last few years, he occasionally fell behind on his lease payments of about $8,500 per month, which technically put the restaurant in default on its lease obligations.

However, Park said he was always able to get the rent caught up, and the landlord didn’t press the matter until last summer.

The Central Avenue Grill landlord informed him in August that he no longer had a lease, indicating that Park needed to vacate the 4,800 square-foot space.

The Parks declared bankruptcy Aug. 12 in United States Federal Court in Albuquerque.
Park said that they filed bankruptcy to stop the eviction and to give him time to fight the action in court.

Local claimant Patrick Mockler has been watching the bankruptcy proceedings closely.

“Being number 23rd in a long line of creditors, I’m as anxious as everyone else to learn the outcome of Thursday’s meeting,” Mockler said.

Court records indicate that the Parks have accrued a list of creditors and debts of more than $6 million and growing.

A new creditor was added to the list Friday, which includes the Internal Revenue Service at $900,000, the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department at $220,000, and $50,000 to C1C2 Investments for back rent on the lease for Central Avenue Grill.

The bankruptcy filing also shows that the Parks owe money to a number of banks including $301,745 to Los Alamos National Bank, which is listed as a major secured creditor.

Other debts include $17,814 to Bank of America, $12,454 to Chase Bank USA and $7,152 to Capital One, among other creditors.

The judge was expected to render a decision Jan. 13 regarding the lease dispute but that hearing was canceled.

If he rules that the Parks still have a lease on the property, Park has said that he’ll continue to operate the restaurant, otherwise, he’ll have to vacate the premises.