395 Fletcher St. sold again

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395 Fletcher St. - the building formerly owned by Petrolia's former CAO which the town is renting for storage

The land at the centre of an investigation at Petrolia Town Hall has been sold again.
Ontario Land Registry records show 395 Fletcher St. no longer belongs to the town’s chief administrative officer.
Manny Baron’s numbered company owns 395 Fletcher St. which the town rents for $2,500 per month and 4168 Robert Street – home to the town’s new youth and seniors recreation centre.
First, Baron purchased the Robert Street property 11 days before the youth/senior centre concept was approved by council. Baron did not disclose his ownership. He said he didn’t because the town was getting the building “rent free.” Councillor Ross O’Hara later said Baron told him the town was paying $1,800 in utilities in lieu of rent.
The CAO, according to Land Registry documents, purchased 395 Fletcher St. on Sept. 29 from developer Horst Richter. Then during a council meeting Oct. 10, when the ownership of the building was questioned, Baron told councillors it belonged to the developer.
Oct. 20, councillors hired John E. Fleming to investigate and placed Baron on paid leave.
Land registry documents show the CAO sold the property back to Richter, for the original sale price of $290,000, on Oct. 17, two days after the purchase was made public.
Land registry records accessed Monday show Baron still owned 4168 Robert St.
It’s not clear how long the probe will take. The former London administrator has already been conducting interviews with local residents.

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