The demise of Doracon Contracting Inc., the once-powerful construction company that helped to build some of Baltimore’s highest-profile developments, is nearly complete after the firm’s founder agreed Wednesday to sell any remaining assets to pay off creditors.
Now mired in debt and other problems, Doracon once had a hand in the Legg Mason Tower in Harbor East, the Hilton Baltimore Convention Center Hotel and the $1.8 billion project to redevelop 88 acres in East Baltimore. The company was also involved in the $1.5 billion redevelopment of State Center in Baltimore.
Last September, three creditors that were owed more than $200,000 combined filed an involuntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy case against the company to force it to liquidate and pay them.
On Wednesday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Maryland, Ronald H. Lipscomb, Doracon’s president, agreed that lenders and creditors would be “best served” by converting the case to a voluntary Chapter 7 filing. The filing came on the day a hearing had been scheduled with the creditors.
A call to Lipscomb’s attorney in the case, James A. Vidmar, of Logan, Yumkas, Vidmar & Sweeney LLC in Annapolis, was not returned.
The company was incorporated in 1988 and was headquartered in the 3500 block of East Biddle Street in Baltimore. According to the state Department of Assessments and Taxation, Doracon is now classified as not in good standing and its corporate charter is forfeited.
The company and Lipscomb became embroiled in the corruption case against then-Mayor Sheila Dixon. Lipscomb was Dixon’s former boyfriend and was on the prosecution’s list as a star witness in her trial last year.
In the fallout of the investigation, Lipscomb pleaded guilty to violating state campaign finance laws in June 2009 and was fined $25,000 and given a suspended sentence of one year. At the same time, Doracon was being targeted in multiple lawsuits for unpaid construction bills that totaled more than $1 million.
Potts & Callahan Inc. is the largest creditor. The Baltimore company, which does bulk excavation, grading, paving and demolition, claims it is owed $108,532.
One of the creditors that filed the initial case, Baltimore-based Powell’s Trucking Inc., is owed $73,351. Paul J. Rach Inc., which specializes in highway and road construction, is owed $34,325.
Calls to all of the creditors seeking comment were not returned.
The company is facing action outside of bankruptcy court as well. On Nov. 19, in Baltimore City Circuit Court, a default judgment was awarded to Colonial Pacific Leasing Corp. for $696,101.