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RSFA board discusses future of Osuna Ranch property

RANCHO SANTA FE — In 2006, the Rancho Santa Fe Association purchased the Osuna Ranch property for $12 million which houses its historic adobe and equine boarding facility. The topic of selling off a portion of the Osuna Ranch was brought to the table at its February RSFA board meeting.

Originally purchased as 28 acres, 3 acres were sold in 2013 for $1.7 million.

While not an action item, the RSFA staff and Osuna Committee were asked to research the financial and operational considerations for a possible future sale.

RSFA board member and chair of the Osuna committee, Jerry Yahr, was first up for the discussion. He told the board and members that the original goals of the Osuna acquisition were to preserve open space, protect the Adobe and to prevent subdivision.

“Things advance, boards change and opinions change,” Yahr said. “There’s direction indicating that we may not need the full 25 acres of the Osuna Ranch and there is a desire to potentially sell a component of the Osuna property.”

He also pointed out that the Osuna committee based on this direction has come to the conclusion that there’s an opportunity to protect the Adobe, protect some open space, and to also assist the finance committee in their efforts to sell a component of the property.

Yahr wanted the board to know that if the Osuna committee were polled, they would say that they would like to keep the entire property.

“But being realists and seeing that there is an opportunity to take some component of net proceeds or Bill (Overton) has reserves that the money could then be put into the preservation of the Adobe,” Yahr said. “And it could be put into the improvement of open space.”

At the end of the day, Yahr said, there could be 10 acres to 12 acres and could be viewed as more useable to the entire community. He compared that potential much like the Arroyo property.

And it would not require the Association to be in the horse keeping business, he said.

From the three scenarios presented, an unentitled valuation where the land was sold to a developer and the RSFA retained the Osuna Adobe was most favorable. The presentation revealed that in this situation the property showed a value from $6.56 million to $7 million, producing a cash flow of $2.7 million to $3.39 million.

Board director Phillip Wilkinson thought the appraisal was low, and because of this, the RSFA should wait until the “market conditions” were better.

Still, Yahr believed that before proceeding with a future vote more work needed to be done with valuation and also included budgeting, estimating the cost for property improvements, and determining the funds available to be used for such improvements.

“From my perspective, it would be appropriate to have some of our local real estate brokers come in and give their opinion of what the value should be,” Yahr said. “And talk to developers and to people that might be interested in buying a 12 to 15 acre horse operation — so then that’s just a two lot subdivision.”