ARCHIVED  August 10, 2001

Clock runs on Dacono foreclosure

Developers given until January to recover land

DACONO — Developers of the proposed Dacono Factory Stores project have until Jan. 21 to get their property back following a July 25 foreclosure sale that Compass Bank closed with a $3 million bid.

Compass has no plans or developers for the property now, said Al Linton, executive vice president.

“It’s our full intent to allow time for redemption,” he said.

The foreclosure comes seven months after the Arizona Corporation Commission formally accused Dacono developers Wendell “Ted” Decker and Charles Stedman, and their two salesmen Keith “Skip” Davis and Charles Testino, of fraud, selling unregistered securities and being unregistered dealers. The Arizona men sold promissory notes to 110 mostly unsecured investors for more than $5 million, plus $17 million in interest, the commission said.

But documents on file in Weld County suggest more than $83 million flowed into the project via Oxford Development LLC since 1994. The project began in approximately 1992, when Decker secured a long-term sales-tax benefit from the city of Dacono.

In June, the commission settled with Decker, Davis and Testino. They were ordered to stop any illegal activities and pay restitution and penalties worth about $9.35 million.

Stedman attended a hearing in June, at which his attorney denied any culpability. The other three men testified construction financing never came through, but said Stedman was responsible for taking care of the investors’ deeds of trust. The administrative judge who presided at the hearing is drafting a recommendation for the commission.

The commission doesn’t believe the foreclosure will have a big impact on the investors, said commission public-information officer Heather Murphy.

“The foreclosure sale simply means that Compass Bank now owns the dirt,” she said. “If Compass Bank wanted to sell the property to a developer, they would probably want the tax credits and municipal bonding. (But) any transfer of the development rights & if it was done without full restitution to the investors, would be in violation of the commission’s order.”

Arizona investor Michael Keith, who filed suit against the developers, said he didn’t know what would happen. He said he keeps hoping the project will be built and he’ll be repaid.

Arizona creditor and former investor Barbra Bourne wasn’t so hopeful.

“I don’t know where this is going to leave people. I imagine we’re dead in the water,” she said. “I would’ve thought if someone were going to bail the project out, they would’ve bid (at the foreclosure sale).”

Other players are waiting, too. Besides Compass, which holds a $3 million note, Oz Architecture of Boulder and Etkin Skanska Construction Company of Colorado Inc. of Littleton filed mechanics liens in Weld County. Oz says Oxford Development owes $75,984. Etkin says Oxford owes $199,845.

After Jan. 21, those with mechanics liens have several days to buy the property, Linton said. But, if they don’t buy it, they won’t be repaid, he said.

“They’re junior liens to us,” he said.

Developers given until January to recover land

DACONO — Developers of the proposed Dacono Factory Stores project have until Jan. 21 to get their property back following a July 25 foreclosure sale that Compass Bank closed with a $3 million bid.

Compass has no plans or developers for the property now, said Al Linton, executive vice president.

“It’s our full intent to allow time for redemption,” he said.

The foreclosure comes seven months after the Arizona Corporation Commission formally accused Dacono developers Wendell “Ted” Decker and Charles Stedman, and their two salesmen Keith “Skip” Davis and Charles Testino, of fraud, selling unregistered securities and…

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