Failed Ballina business owes $3.3 million
A BALLINA business which was ordered into liquidation last month by the Federal Court may have been trading insolvent since mid-2016.
Manor Holdings (NSW) Pty Ltd, which runs the five star Ballina Manor Boutique Motel on Norton St, owes creditors an estimated $3.3 million including approximately $650,000 in taxes, penalties and interest to the Australian Tax Office and $140,000 in unpaid superannuation entitlements to former staff.
One of the directors of the company is accountant Belinda Catherine Nott, who is currently serving a 15-month suspended jail sentence for fraud.
The 39-year-old was convicted in Lismore Local Court in November after she falsified $5720 in payment receipts to a Lismore advertising business.
In October last year the ATO launching wind up proceedings against Manor Holdings in the Federal Court, which ended in a court order on April 17 with the appointment of insolvency firm Cor Cordis as liquidator.
Cor Cordis had previously been appointed to oversee the company's financial affairs after it went into voluntary administration on February 9.
In a March 8 report to Manor Holdings' creditors prepared by the firm, it was understood the company had not paid superannuation since March 2016.
Cor Cordis also reported that since August 2014 the ATO had conducted 11 audits on the company's superannuation obligations.
The report also noted concerns about a "lack of credibility and accuracy" in the company's financial accounts.
Cor Cordis is now investigating 357 transactions totalling almost $320,000 over the two years prior to its appointment which may be involve unfair preferencing or constitute unreasonable director-related transactions.
It estimated in its March 8 report to creditors that the business may have been trading insolvent up to an amount of between $98,000 and $200,000.
There are just five casual employees remaining at the hotel, which is still operating under the direction of the liquidators.
The most valuable asset is the property itself, which was purchased by Manor Holdings when it incorporated in 2010.
Cor Cordis has appointed a real estate agent to list the heritage property for sale.
The Northern Star has also been contacted by former employees of the business who spoke on condition of anonymity.
One employee described how she was constantly paid wages late and "never received a cent" of superannuation.
The former office clerk said she was on various occasions provided cheques which bounced and also handed documentation which appeared to prove she had been paid, when there was no money in her account.
She said it was "absolute displeasure" to work for the now failed business.
"As an office staff member I spent a large part of my employment there receiving calls from disgruntled creditors, and on occasions even guests, who were (also) chasing money," the woman told The Northern Star.