Del Mar weighing idea of purchasing Fairgrounds

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Photo from 'RightIndex' via Flikr

Photo from 'RightIndex' via Flikr

This past May, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger proposed on selling state properties to help balance the state budget. Unfortunately, one of those properties mentioned was the Del Mar Fairgrounds along with the Orange County Fairgrounds.  However, there was no mention of selling the Fairgrounds in the state budget that was signed by the governor just recently.

Crystal Crawford, the mayor of Del Mar, has said that the city is still exploring the idea of buying the Fairgrounds in order to keep it in the public domain. Even if it is not for sale this year, the city has agreed to research the idea of taking over the fairgrounds.

The state budget that was signed within the past few weeks only covers for one year and has no long-term plan to help with the budget crisis. Crawford had stated that it is likely that state officials will discuss selling the property which is estimated to be between $400 million and $700 million dollars. Crawford had also sent a letter to Gov. Schwarzenegger on July 17 requesting that she may participate in future discussions involving the sale of the fairgrounds.

Crawford emphasized in the letter that the fairgrounds covers one-fifth the geographic area of Del Mar.  Del Mar is the city’s largest water and sewer customer, and it has the highest volume of 911 calls.

Del Mar is one of the best places to visit in San Diego for both locals and tourists. Much of the city’s income comes from the fairgrounds, and it has a $400 million annual economic impact to San Diego County.

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