Getty Realty Corp. (NYSE-GTY) (the “Company”) announced that the United States Bankruptcy Court (the “Court”) in the bankruptcy case of Getty Petroleum Marketing, Inc. (“Marketing”), the Company’s largest tenant, issued an order yesterday affirming the Company’s right to receive post-bankruptcy rent for December 2011 and January 2012 and rejecting an attempt by Marketing to “offset” the rent for such months. The Court ordered Marketing to comply with all of its post-bankruptcy obligations under the Master Lease, including the obligations to pay fixed rent and real estate taxes (the “Order”). The Order requires Marketing to pay $3 million towards these obligations by January 17 th and the remainder of the amounts due under the Master Lease on account of unpaid post-bankruptcy obligations, which includes more than $9 million of unpaid fixed rent, not later than February 5, 2012.
David B. Driscoll, President and CEO of the Company commented, “We welcome the decision of the Bankruptcy Court requiring Marketing to comply with its post-bankruptcy obligations under the Master Lease. The Company intends to continue to protect its interests with respect to the Master Lease and pursue all other rights and remedies available to it as appropriate. We remain confident of the long-term value in the portfolio subject to the Master Lease and optimistic about the future of our Company.”
The Company has previously disclosed that it had served Marketing with a formal notice of termination of the Master Lease as a result of Marketing’s nonpayment of November 2011 rent. As of November 30, 2011 Marketing leased approximately 800 properties under the Master Lease and the monthly fixed rent that was due to the Company under the Master Lease was approximately $4.9 million. Under the Master Lease, Marketing is responsible for the payment of taxes, maintenance, repair, insurance, environmental and other operating expenses. The Company believes that it is likely that Marketing has not paid some or all of the real estate taxes due and owing under the Master Lease in a timely manner.