Camarillo Residents contact Council Members on Old Town Firehouse sale

Two residents who have contacted us on prior issues are concerned that Camarillo City Council sell the Old Town firehouse to the St. Mary Magdalen Church to be put to use by their school. Here is what they wrote:

Dear City Council Members:

I urge you to sell the Old Town firehouse to St. Mary Magdalen Church.  It doesn’t make sense to hold on to this property any longer.  The intent to make it into a restaurant is not prudent or feasible considering the lack of parking, the condition of the property, and the fact that restaurants have come and gone just across the street from the firehouse.  The dilapidated property serves as an embarrassing reminder of your tenure and is an eye sore that’s located at a focal point in our city.  You’ll never recover the money you’ve invested.  At this point in time, 20 years and counting, it’s better to cut OUR losses and move forward.

Sincerely,  Lori McVicker

It’s time to sell the firehouse to the SMM School.  Their $525,000 offer is a fair offer, especially in light of all the work they’ll have to do to get it in usable shape after your 20 years of neglectful ownership.  Sure, try to squeeze a little more from them if you can, but this boondoggle has to stop here and now.  Remember, you still have the old library that you have to get rid of too.  To budget another $1.3 million this year to it after spending more than $1.2 million is beyond the pale.

I’m attaching a video link of the part concerning the firehouse that occurred during the last CC meeting.  Mr. Morgan’s and Mr. Norman’s treatment of Mr. Little was disgraceful IMHO.  Disagreeing with someone is one thing.  I believe Mr. Norman is unsuitable to be city manager in light of how he treated Mr. Little. The fact that Mr. Morgan waived his arm towards Mr. Norman and directed him to respond to Mr. Little indicates to me, that Mr. Norman was being used by Mr. Morgan to fight his battle.  So typical of Mr. Morgan.

Please do the right thing and sell it to SMM.

Sincerely,  Jeff McVicker

Old Town Firehouse next to St. Mary Magadela Church -- Photo Credit Goggle Earth

Old Town Firehouse next to St. Mary Magdalen Church — Photo Credit Goggle Earth


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The city has approximately $1.6 million invested in the old fire station and a couple years ago hired(recommended by the prior city manager B. Feng) Kosmont for a reported $100,000 to find a buyer and/or develop a plan to redevelop the fire station. Kosmont has been unsuccessful and still recieved a contract extension from the council. The council declined the church’s cash offer that is believed to be in the low $525,000. The council has been stuck for 19 years on the idea of converting the fire station into a restaurant. Enough time and taxpayer $s have been spent. The fire station has insufficient parking area, poor access and the building has a high construction cost. Its been obvious to most, except to the council, that a restaurant use is not financially feasible. In real estate terms it’s called the highest and best use of a property. Plus, its time to cut tax dollar losses and move on. The dialogue on this video illustrates the difficulty the council has and has had on what to do with the fire station. Mr. Little’s request for a future meeting was reasonable with no intend to discuss the $525,000 offer. Morgan and City Mgr Norman inappropriately over reacted. I would strongly encourage concern citizens to email the council with your opinions at [email protected]. It appears the council is in real need of some real advise to face reality after 19 years.

John Laffetty

Kudos to Mr. Little.