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Hidden Valley makes payment

| Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2005

Owners of Hidden Valley Four Season Resort in Somerset County made a $500,000 payment to the county's tax claim bureau, averting a potential sale for delinquent property taxes.

The resort's owners owed roughly $1.1 million in delinquent taxes for the past three years, and county tax claim bureau officials last week said at least $401,459 had to be paid to prevent a tax sale Monday.

Somerset County Commission Chairman James Marker said representatives of the resort made the payment Monday, and under an agreement worked out with the county, the owners agreed to pay the remaining balance of taxes owed by the end of the year.

The resort's work force peaks at 900 full-and part-time employees during the ski season.

Hidden Valley has been owned since 1983 by the Kettler family of the Washington, D.C., area. Last month, the family sought bids on the 1,100-acre resort, in its entirety or in pieces.

The package includes the inn and conference center, ski area, ski lodge, 18-hole golf course and several hundred acres of undeveloped area.

Bids are scheduled to be opened Sept. 30, followed by a 21-day review period, said Keith James, spokesman for Hidden Valley.

James said scattered media reports that at least five serious buyers have emerged are erroneous.

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