Fair Board Makes A Decision - Kinda
In the Daily Pilot tomorrow morning Mona Shadia reports HERE that the Orange County Fair Board endorsed Governor Schwarzenegger's plan for local control of fairgrounds statewide.
ARNOLD ENDORSED - BARELY
The board apparently voted 4-0, with David Padilla abstaining and Mary Young and Dale Dykema absent. Geez, at least they got a quorum this time!
WHAT? SAY AGAIN?
Shadia quotes fairgrounds head honcho, Steve Beazley, as stating, "This kind of creative thinking shows that this board is affirming its goals. It starts to show an effort of what the board's intention is." What?! What the heck does that last sentence mean? "starts to show"? What does that mean? How much do they pay this guy? Didn't he have to pass some kind of a literacy test for his job? Apparently not!
ELLIS AS GEPETTO
The Fair Board, under the "leadership" of Kristina Dodge, has demonstrated an astounding inability to perform under pressure in the past 9 months. It feels like, somewhere in the background, the nimble fingers of Dave Ellis are pulling the strings - which should make everyone more than a little nervous.
DGS DECISION DUE SOON
The State Department of General Services had committed to completing it's analysis of the purchase proposal by the high bidder, Craig Realty Group of Newport Beach and announce it's decision by April. Well, we've got a couple weeks left in this month... Maybe the DGS will announce it's decision on April 1st - how perfectly fitting that would be!
THREE CLOSED SESSION DISCUSSIONS IN TWO WEEKS
By the way, in it's closed session next Tuesday prior to the regular council meeting the Costa Mesa City Council will hear - for the third time in two weeks - from lead negotiator City Manager Allan Roeder about the progress on the Fairgrounds sale. Since they never report out on real estate negotiations and since the bid by the city/county combine was way, way low, one must assume they will be discussing the lease/purchase option that Gary Monahan let out of the bag a few weeks ago. The pace has obviously quickened and I suppose we will eventually know the results....
THE COMMUNITY TURNING INTO SMURFS
So, the beat goes on. The Fair Board continues their tail-between-their-legs inaction and the broader community continues to write to the governor requesting him to stop the sale and simultaneously holds its collective breath.
TOSS THE BOARD OUT
In my view, if the city/county can somehow convince the state to work a deal on a lease/purchase agreement, before the ink is dry on that agreement the current Fair Board should be tossed out like a mess of unrefrigerated flounder and a whole new governing body selected to manage the Fair and Events Center. The current Board has demonstrated that it's not trustworthy and is unresponsive to the needs of the public. It should be replaced by a cadre of current and former Orange County leaders - men and women of unimpeachable integrity - to chart the future of the Fairgrounds and guide it's management.
NEW LEADERSHIP, INCLUDING BEAZLEY
In my minds-eye, that means two members of Costa Mesa leadership (appointed by the City Council), two members of Orange County leadership (appointed by the Board of Supervisors) and five members from the broader community, to be appointed by the first four, who will function as members of a "governance sub-committee". The future of Steve Beazley as top guy at the Fairgrounds would be in this new board's hands. Personally, I don't think he's the right guy, but that's just my opinion.
THE END MAY BE NEAR - ONE WAY OR THE OTHER
So, after nearly a year of angst, thousands of air miles by local officials between here and Sacramento, tens of thousands of signatories on petitions begging the governor to halt the sale, hundreds of demonstrators pounding the pavement, competing entities trying to muscle each other out of the spotlight and thousands of diverse community members joining in unexpected alliances to quash the sale, we might have an idea how this fiasco will finally be resolved within a couple of weeks.
Labels: Fairgrounds Sale