Reporting Ron Jones
FAIRFIELD (CBS13) — CBS13 is finally getting answers from the City of Fairfield about the Aug. 27 fire that destroyed 5 homes and damaged 10 others.
The big question has been who owns the fence between a soundwall and homes that’s been at the center of the fight between neighbors and the city.
George Hicks, the director for Fairfield’s Department of Public Works pulled out official city maps. He says they show that the the city wasn’t responsible for uncut vegetation that fueled flames behind the chain link fence on Marigold Drive.
Hicks says the answer to who owns the fence starts decades ago when the homes were first built. There was flooding behind the homes and the state stepped in.
“Department of Water Resources came in there, and built a multi-million dollar flood-control project.”
He says the state took control of an access road leading to the rear of the burned-out homes. But the fence still has city of Fairfield warning signs on it.
“Unfortunately the sign hadn’t been taken down, so the sign is old,” Hicks said.
We reached out to the Department of Water Resources to confirm Hicks’ statement, but they have yet to respond.
And when it comes to that fence, the city says they didn’t put it up.
Hicks says the homeowners’ property extends beyond the fence to the soundwall, making the property owners responsible for the uncut vegetation.
“The fence is theirs, and if they want to take down—the chain link fence—it’s their property and they can treat it as such.”
So who put the fence up?
Hicks believes it was the original contractor, Stanley M Davis Homes. We went to the last known address in Davis only to learn the builder has been closed for years, and the owners may be deceased.
“We have access, but we don’t have access,” said Fairfield resident Lei Lonnie Christeson.
Some on Marigold Drive are very suspicious.
“I think the city is looking for an easy way out and don’t want to take responsibility. Period.”