EB&T Sues New Mexico Innovation Triangle On Loan Default For Former Hilltop House Property


Enterprise Bank & Trust has filed a lawsuit in First Judicial Court against New Mexico Innovation Triangle, LLC, Larry D. Hawker, John J. Mahoney and John F. Rizzo in connection with a $937,500 commercial loan agreement entered into April 8, 2020 to purchase the Hilltop House Hotel Property.

Court records indicate that a promissory note was executed between the two parties with a maturity date of April 27, 2021, which was extended to July 27, 2021 and then to October 27, 2021. At that point NMIT entered into a forbearance agreement and release extending the maturity date of the note to January 31, 2022. Several amendments were made extending the note until January 31, 2023. The note has matured but has not been paid. 

As of May 25 when the suit was filed, $937,148 was owed as well as accrued interest of $22,257. Also sought is interest beginning May 26 at a rate of 7.5 percent and the Phase 1 fee of $2,500. Enterprise Band & Trust is seeking a judgment against the parties jointly and severally to include attorneys’ fees and costs.

Los Alamos County Councilors voted unanimously in April 2022 to direct County Manager Steven Lynne to “proceed with the actions necessary to remove the Hilltop House and its ruins, wreckage and debris from Los Alamos County and lien the parcel of land for the reasonable cost of the removal of the Hilltop House incurred by the County provided for in NMSA Section 3-18-5 and Los Alamos Resolution 21-30”.

Municipalities have the power under state law to address dangerous buildings and debris by what is commonly referred to as “clean and lien”. The Hilltop House property was declared “so ruined, damaged and dilapidated from lack of regular maintenance and damage that the structure is now unsafe and a threat to the public’s health, safety and welfare”.

The “reasonable cost” of demolishing the buildings and clearing the resulting debris turned out to be some $1,325,000, which includes $275,000 for asbestos abatement. In addition to the County and EBT liens on the property, Encompass Studies, LLC, of Las Vegas, Nevada also has recorded a security interest in the property.

No response to the complaint has been filed yet in District Court.