Camp McConnell sold by Alachua County to Friendship Circle

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) -- The purchases of Camp McConnell today was a sad one---that is, if you ask officials with Camp Florida.

This afternoon, Alachua County Commissioners voted to sell the site to the South Florida organization 'Friendship Circle' a representative with camp Florida issuing this statement that reads in part:

"We are very saddened by the commission's decision today. it is the duty of the county commission to do the right thing by the taxpayer, not to be fair to a private religious group."

At first, commissioners were considering delaying the decision for 30 to 60 days while Camp Florida and Friendship Circle discussed a possible partnership where they could both use the land.

Rabbi Zalman Fellig, with Friendship Circle, said at that point in the meeting, "I'm not looking for a partner, so let me just tell you up front. I mean, I didn't come here originally for that. I didn't go through this journey for a year and a half to two years to partner up with somebody that popped up the last minute, if you don't mind me saying with all due respect."

Commissioners ultimately agreed in a 4-to-1 vote to sell Camp McConnell to Friendship Circle for $1,025,000. They also passed a motion to explore other sites where Camp Florida could operate its camps.