Raft company has time for IRD debt

By Katie Holland

Rotorua rafting company Kaitiaki Adventures has been given until next month to settle its debt to Inland Revenue or risk being placed in liquidation.

In the High Court at Rotorua,last week Associate Judge Anthony Christiansen granted the rafting and sledging business one "very last adjournment" until December 10 to pay in full or come to an agreement with the commissioner. If that doesn't happen the company, which employs 15 staff, will have an order for liquidation made against it.

"It's not looking good," Associate Judge Christiansen said. "This is the last chance they have."

An agreement had previously been made that the company would hand over a $100,000 bank cheque prior to Monday's hearing, in order for them to be granted a further adjournment. That did not happen and instead a letter from the company was handed to the judge stating the $100,000 would be paid as soon as a pending property sale was completed.

Counsel for Inland Revenue opposed a further adjournment and requested the liquidation order be made.

However, Kaitiaki Adventures' lawyer said it had made substantial efforts to clear the debt and it didn't seem fair to deny one further short adjournment, particularly given the devastating effect liquidation would have on the company's employees and their families.

The court was told that despite Kaitiaki Adventures having paid $130,000 since the application for liquidation was made in April, it still owed Inland Revenue $345,058.51 including interest and penalties.

However, outside court Kaitiaki Adventures director Jason Wright told The Daily Post the figures stated in court were incorrect and the company only owed $100,000.

Mr Wright said although it wasn't an ideal situation, a property sale in Christchurch was being completed which would enable the debt to be paid and the company to continue as normal.

He said the company had been compliant for the past two years and he had no concerns for its future or that of its staff.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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