ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) - Strong words coming from Virgin Galactic saying essentially they will pay rent at The Spaceport but they are not happy about it.
Just days before their first rent check is due, Virgin Galactic, Spaceport America's anchor tenant is not happy.
"They would have preferred I think not to begin to pay rent quite that soon," said New Mexico Spaceport Authority Executive Director Christine Anderson.
In a phone interview Monday night Anderson told KRQE News 13 the issues is a list of things that still need to be completed at the $209 million facility near Truth or Consequences.
In an email sent from Virgin Galactic the list included the hangar floor, entrance way and more.
"They've said well its a long list and we would have preferred that there all done at the time of rent commencement but that's not what the lease says," Anderson said.
According to Anderson the lease only requires what is called base building standard completion which the Spaceport achieved on November 15, 2012 60 days from that date is when the about $90,000 monthly rent kicks in.
"We went back and forth and they finally agreed that they would pay rent beginning January 15 and it was they said and I quote, under protest," said Anderson.
That is not the only fight Virgin is putting up, in that same email they also said if NMSA does not finish those lingering projects by March 31st they could either stop paying rent, pay a reduced rent or give notice to terminate the facilities lease.
News 13 asked Anderson if that concerned her.
"I think I was more disappointed in that because again it is business and I'm basing it on what the lease says," she said.
Anderson said while she does not have a crystal ball she does believe Virgin Galactic will fulfill its lease and move into the spaceport.
Virgin's CEO did not get back to us for comment.
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