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State: No sale of fairgrounds
By Michael Gardner
U-T SACRAMENTO BUREAU
8:29 p.m. July 21, 2009
SACRAMENTO – Del Mar Fairgrounds apparently has been taken off the market.
As part of the proposed state budget deal, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will be granted some latitude over sale and lease back of state properties, and potentially determining the fate of the Orange County Fairgrounds.
Del Mar is not on that list, and state officials indicate there is no interest in pursuing its sale even if they take up the broader surplus property issue later this summer.
The governor in May unveiled a broad proposal to unload dozens of properties, including Del Mar Fairgrounds, which sits on slightly more than 400 acres of prime coastal real estate and is a popular venue for horse racing (This year's season opens Wednesday).
The community of Del Mar last week approved exploring a bid for the property, valued at between $400 million and $700 million.
Members of the Schwarzenegger administration declined to comment.
The decision not to pursue Del Mar Fairgrounds was later confirmed by a spokesperson for Sen. Dennis Hollingsworth, R-Temecula, a lead budget negotiator.