Federal judge approves sale of Rarity Bay properties to Salem Pointe Capital
A federal judge has authorized the sale of properties at the Rarity Bay development in Vonore to Salem Pointe Capital LLC, a newly formed ownership group based in Knoxville.
In a Wednesday hearing, U.S. District Judge Thomas Varlan called Salem Pointe's $5.75 million offer, which drew no objections, "fair and reasonable."
Varlan had directed a receiver in January to conduct a private sale of assets, which included the golf course and clubhouse, 172 lots, 11 condos and approximately 27 acres of vacant land.
The deal is expected to close within 30 days.
"It's a local property that we've been eying for some time. It's had some headlines, but it hasn't had anything to do with the property or the people who live there. We are very excited and humbled to be part of its future," said Michael Ayres of Salem Pointe. Ayres also is an associate director with Cushman & Wakefield Cornerstone.
Sam McCamy III, president of McCamy Construction, will be the master developer for the project.
The court-ordered receivership sale is in connection with a long-standing legal dispute between Knoxville developer Robert Stooksbury and his former business partner, Maryville developer Mike Ross. Stooksbury has been trying to collect damages owed since 2012.
Five bids originally were received, although one later withdrew, said Sterling Owen IV, the former Knoxville police chief who was appointed receiver. Among the four bids, only Salem Pointe's offer met the threshold requirements based on the average of three property appraisals valued at $8.5 million. No sale could be confirmed at a price less than two-thirds of that amount.
When asked by Varlan if the proposed contract was agreeable, Stooksbury's attorney Wayne Ritchie said, "I certainly do. It's in the best interest to complete the sale. There continues to be expenses that accompany the property that could cause the value to potentially diminish."