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Martha Property Update

There’s some news we’d like to share with you

Image Credit to Jocelyn Knight

Image Credit to Jocelyn Knight

Martha has agreed to an appraisal!

Yes, the owners of the Martha Property have agreed to obtaining an appraisal to help determine the property’s actual value. We couldn’t be more delighted with this exciting development. Jerry Riessen, the leader of Tiburon Open Space:

This is great news. Really great news. We have all been working hard to help make this appraisal happen, a necessary step in arriving at a fair purchase price. We now enter a delicate phase. The appraisal will be as complex as the long journey to get us to this point. It is precisely what is needed to continue towards the goal of purchasing Martha and allowing her to be open forever.

Specifically, the Martha Property owners have agreed to commence an appraisal, working with The Trust for Public Lands, an organization trusted by both the property owners and Tiburon Open Space.

Now what?

The temptation to offer a toast, while real, is premature. A breakthrough? In many ways, yes. A victory? No. Not yet. There is still much work to be completed. The parties will have to identify and agree on the appraisers, the process, the timeline. And then agree on the appraised value to effect an actual purchase.

Although there has not been any interest expressed thus far to purchase the property on the open market, it will remain for sale during an appraisal.

There will be a significant cost to completing this process. We’ll need all kinds of help with that. We are, of course, very grateful to those of you who have made contributions to keep this process alive thus far. "Thank you” cannot possibly convey how we feel about your help.

As you read this, we would ask you to consider the fact that this breakthrough moment is the culmination of years and years of work, endless hours, many buckets of frustration and, at times, grave worry about outcome. But here, today, that work has paid off in the form of an agreement to proceed; an agreement to appraise. We take a deep breath, find some comfort in the magnitude of this agreed next step, then resolve to push ahead with renewed energy: a forever open Martha feels like she is within our grasp.

Stay tuned. Help us if you can.

Tiburon Open Space





March 2018 Update

Dear Friends of Tiburon Open Space,

Hello.  It’s been a while.  We have some very good news.  

Yesterday, United States Federal Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James ruled against the Martha Company, denying their moves to enforce the stipulated judgments of 1976 and 2007.  Judge James wrote:
Having considered the parties' arguments, the relevant legal authority,
and the record in this matter, the Court RECOMMENDS
the District Judge DENY the Motion.

Said differently, the court ruled 100% in our favor!  And 100% in favor of Marin County, the other party in the legal action.  This order is actually a recommendation to Federal District Court Judge Saundra Armstrong who will then make the final order.  We are optimistic that she will accept Judge James’ order in its entirety.  The Martha Company can choose to appeal. They have 14 days to do so. 

Martha Property

We, of course, hope that they will not choose that option. In fact, we will encourage them to come to the table, sit with us and other parties, and begin a meaningful discussion to determine a fair purchase price for the land.  

While we would love to, we’ll host no party just yet.  There’s still a long way to go. There will be considerable expense involved with the effort to determine that fair price.

So, yes, we are asking for your continued public, emotional and financial support.  We need money to take a major step closer to the ultimate finish line: a Martha open space that will be open, forever.

We welcome your enthusiasm, questions and support.  Thank you.

Tiburon Open Space

TOS, etc.