Saturday, January 20, 2018
Apple Valley historical top hill House. (Photo by Christian Quezada via Google Maps)
Apple Valley historical top hill House. (Photo by Christian Quezada via Google Maps)

Town of Apple Valley Seeks Appointment of Receiver For Hilltop House

APPLE VALLEY, CALIF:( On Friday, January 8, 2016, the Town of Apple Valley filed a Complaint with the San Bernardino Superior Court seeking the appointment of a receiver for the Hilltop House Property to remediate a long list of significant code violations.

The Hilltop Property was previously owned by Newton T. “Newt” Bass, one of the founding fathers of Apple Valley. In the 1950’s Newt Bass hired Francisco Artigas, a prominent Mexican architect, to design and build the house. Over the years, the Hilltop House has fallen into disrepair, has become a magnet for all sorts of criminal activity and acts of mischief, and has suffered damage from fires set by vandals and vagrants. OK Doyle purchased the Property at a tax sale in 2000, and then deeded it to the current owner, 360 Apple West, LLC, a Nevada Limited Liability Corporation.

Since that time, there have been no serious efforts to restore or even properly maintain the Hilltop Property. The Town has deemed the Property a public nuisance, and issued a Notice and Order to 360 Apple West LLC to correct the numerous substandard conditions at the Property, and 360 Apple West failed to respond to such Notice.

The Town seeks the appointment of a receiver to abate the nuisance conditions. If appointed, the receiver will explore all viable possibilities for abating the nuisance conditions. These possibilities include restoration of the home by the receiver, sale of the property to an investor or other entity with the capital to restore the home, and demolition of the structures (if rehabilitation is not economically feasible based on its current condition). The Town’s decision to purse a receiver is based on the recognition that the property owner is either unwilling and/or incapable of correcting the nuisance conditions, after 15 years of owning the Property and not taking any action to restore it.

Finally, the Town believes the appointment of a receiver, who by law is required to act as a neutral and in the best interests of the receivership estate, provides important safeguards for both the Town and the property owner. “The receiver has a duty to act as would a prudent person caring for his or her own property,” said Charisse Smith, Special Receivership Counsel. Ms. Smith explains that a receiver is an officer of the court, appointed to take possession of the property and to rehabilitate it according to the orders of the court: “The Hilltop Property will remain under the court’s control and continuous supervision … the receiver will have to seek specific instructions from the court before taking any action that hasn’t been previously authorized by court order.” “The Town’s primary goal is to make sure the Hilltop Property complies with the same standards that apply to the rest of community as a whole” said Ms. Smith.

For more information concerning this matter, please contact Charisse Smith, Special Receivership Counsel for the Town of Apple Valley at 909-257-0650.

(Town of Apple Valley Press Release)



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