The dozens of liens filed against SeaWorld Entertainment by contractors for unpaid work during the COVID-19 pandemic includes one for Iron Gwazi, the hybrid coaster awaiting guests at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. 

In the lien filed with Hillsborough County on May 27, coaster manufacturer Rocky Mountain Construction said it is owed $3.5 million for labor, materials and services. The lien, which you can view here, places the total value of RMC’s services to SeaWorld at nearly $9.1 million. 

The Tampa Bay Times had previously reported that Busch Gardens was facing 24 liens, totaling $2.5 million, from vendors and contractors for bills that came due during the pandemic, which shut down all of SeaWorld’s parks in Central Florida from mid-March until June 11. 

In a statement to Orlando Rising, SeaWorld Entertainment said: “We thank our vendors for their partnership, understanding and patience during this unprecedented time. As we re-open our parks and begin to generate revenue again we are working with our vendors to complete all outstanding payments.”

As Orlando Rising previously reported, the theme park chain is already facing a lawsuit over allegations of not paying construction bills. Level 10 construction has claimed that SeaWorld has refused to pay nearly $3.3 million for work on the Emperor dive coaster at SeaWorld San Diego until its parks reopen. 

The coronavirus shutdown led to immediate belt-tightening at SeaWorld. Soon after the mid-March closure of its parks, nearly all of the company’s workforce was furloughed and it raised $227 million in a private offering. Executives also accepted cuts to their salaries, but were also given $6.8 million in stock awards

As for Iron Gwazi, no opening date has been announced for the record-setting hybrid coaster. Test runs had begun at the ride just before the pandemic forced Busch Gardens Tampa Bay to close.

This story was updated after publication with a statement from SeaWorld. 

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