OXNARD : City Officials May Seek Foreclosure

The Oxnard City Council is likely at its next meeting to authorize foreclosure proceedings against developers of the Oxnard Town Center for failure to pay more than $1.1 million in special tax payments, city officials said Thursday.

Representatives of the River Edge Development Co., the Solvang management firm coordinating the development project, were warned last month that Dec. 10 was the deadline to pay the special tax, Oxnard City Manager Vern Hazen said.

Since the tax--which is actually interest on a bond measure that provided infrastructure on the parcel of land east of the Ventura Freeway where the Town Center is to be built--is still unpaid, city officials have no choice but to begin foreclosure proceedings, Hazen said.

"Our only obligation as fiduciary agent for the bondholders is to be sure that payment is made," Hazen said, adding that the foreclosure action could force the firm to pay or the property will be sold.

City Finance Director Rudy Muravez said the beginning of foreclosure proceedings would probably trigger payment.

The development project calls for construction of several high-rise and mid-size office buildings, a shopping mall, restaurants and a cultural arts center on the property, although to date only one office building has been built. Representatives of River Edge Development Co. were unavailable for comment.

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