By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Yellow Bluff team 'not the bad guys'
Placeholder Image
Editor, Yellow Bluff has received considerable unwarranted negative publicity in the past few weeks from your newspaper. We’ve been portrayed as the “big bad developer against the little guy.”  
We appreciate the opportunity to tell the other side of the story as we address the issues stated in Gary Barnes’ letters to the editor and in subsequent editorial comments.
Once Arthur Goodman decided to sell his property, it would no longer be the Yellow Bluff Fish Camp. The Goodman family selected Ren Keel, Allen Brown and Fred Shore because of their integrity, professionalism and vision for the property.
The Yellow Bluff Company contacted every landowner who had property adjoining Yellow Bluff before applying for rezoning.  They were shown a copy of the proposed master plan and amenity package.  
Each landowner was encouraged to keep their property. We offered them a free Yellow Bluff Club membership and ownership in all of the amenities.
In exchange, we asked that owners conform to the coastal community architecture at some point, to abide by the Yellow Bluff rules and regulations, and to enjoy the Yellow Bluff lifestyle that is second to none. This was an offer, not a demand.
To comply with the covenants, one long-time resident added a metal roof to their home to blend with the neighborhood look. One built a Southern Living plan on their lot. A third outparcel owner plans to build a Yellow Bluff cottage.  
The Yellow Bluff Company, LLC, does not wish to purchase the property of Mr. Barnes.  With the state of the current real estate market, we are focusing on promoting for sale Yellow Bluff lots, cottages, town home cottages and custom home sites.
The problem with Mr. Barnes started when the Yellow Bluff Company refused to pay $1.6 million for his lot and the lots he had put under contract with Mr. Johnston, and Mr. Turner/Anderson. Gary Barnes began a personal mission to destroy Yellow Bluff with a media plan to portray Yellow Bluff Company as a “big bad developer against the little guy.”
Gary Barnes is no “little guy.” He is a wealthy commercial real estate developer with extensive real estate holdings.
Gary Barnes is no “little guy.” His Bulloch County home is a three-story estate home on a private lake. Yet, he claims his Liberty County home is now his permanent residence even though he received a letter from the health department for noncompliance regarding the home’s only bathing facility/outdoor shower.
Gary Barnes is no “little guy.” His yacht is moored in Louisiana.
Mr. Barnes has used the fence as a means to manipulate information to get what he wants. He fails to mention the fence was constructed after a series of threats because the partners refused to pay the exorbitant price for his property.
The fence was erected because Gary Barnes threatened to construct a 40-foot flagpole to fly a Rebel flag, to post obscene photos in his windows, and to rent to “undesirables” so prospective customers would not purchase at Yellow Bluff.  The partners then worked with the appropriate Liberty County departments to obtain approvals to erect the fence.
The fence adjacent to Mr. Barnes does not violate the fence ordinance.
Mr. Barnes has complained he cannot cross the curb in his truck to get to his home. Oddly, the curb is a rollover curb that is the same one used for all driveways in Oyster Point at Yellow Bluff.  In the newspaper photo, the brake lights are visible as he applies the gas to spin the wheels.
Mr. Barnes has also erected a mailbox inches from the already constructed fence to show the mailbox could not open. The reality is no one has or will have mail delivered to their home since the streets are private roads. Mail has always been picked up at the Yellow Bluff Store.  
Mr. Barnes has harassed current owners of town home cottages and coastal cottages at Yellow Bluff with repeated visits, vulgar emails and slanderous comments about Yellow Bluff partners.  
Overheard outdoor discussions between Mr. Barnes and compatriots about having motorcycle gangs come to Yellow Bluff to burn fences have frightened the children of owners of Yellow Bluff town homes.
John Keinath, PhD’s Sept. 21 letter to the editor that said “… and since no one will be there to see it, substitute signs with chainsaws, pick axes, and sledgehammers, and we will take care of these people’s problems ...” One father asked, “Does Keinath realize that young children sleep less than 40-feet from the fence?”
Contrary to Mr. Barnes, fire protection is better than ever at Yellow Bluff since the addition of fire hydrants and a new and bigger well.
Contrary to Mr. Barnes, there is no problem with 9-1-1 emergency services.
The local developers, Allen Brown and Ren Keel, are “good old boys” if that means they are lifelong residents of Liberty County and have a reputation of working hard to achieve any success.  
The Yellow Bluff Company has tried to work with Gary Barnes. However, after every meeting, Gary Barnes has followed the meeting with a show of “negative publicity” that began when the partners were out of town representing Yellow Bluff in an international competition.
The Yellow Bluff partners and team have worked hard to honor the integrity of the land, its history, and its people. In spite of Mr. Barnes’ constant public misinformation, we have tried to stay positive and focused on what is right for the Yellow Bluff community. We wanted all landowners, including Gary Barnes, to be a part of it.
We invite you to visit us and see firsthand why the best is to yet come at Yellow Bluff.

The Yellow Bluff team
Ren Keel
Allen Brown
Sign up for our e-newsletters