Brown's Budget & The Fairgrounds
Retread Governor Jerry Brown presented his revised 2011/2012 budget today. You can read Brian Joseph's article from the Orange County Register HERE.
OVERVIEW AND THE REAL DEAL
You can read the Governor's overview, HERE. Or, you can do the equivalent of pulling your fingernails out with pliers and read the full budget HERE.
One thing I was concerned about was the possible impact on the status of the Orange County Fairgrounds. A clue was the final paragraph in that overview, which reads as follows:
Sell underutilized state properties. The revised budget proposes the sale of state-owned properties like the Los Angeles Coliseum, the Montclair Golf Course in Oakland, the Capital Area Development Authority in Sacramento and the Ramirez Canyon property in Southern California. These properties serve no state function and should be sold off to pay debt.
"REDUCING STATE GOVERNMENT"
I saw that and it got my juices flowing. So, with a little help from my friends, we located "Reducing State Government", HERE. Once there, go to page 120 and find the last paragraph which states:
Develop a Comprehensive Policy for Fairgrounds - Individual legislative initiatives have been introduced to sell fairgrounds over the years. These proposals should be evaluated in the context of a statewide policy and a property by property review of fairgrounds. The Secretary of Food and Agriculture will develop a plan to be included in the Governor's 2012-13 Budget, addressing the future operation, maintenance and oversight of the Network of California Fairs, including real and personal property and the feasibility to restructure the governance of the fairs within this network.
IS THIS GOOD NEWS? LOOKS LIKE IT...
We can assume that this little bit of prose, combined with what appeared to be a less-than-sympathetic grilling of Fairgrounds sale proponents by the appeals panel last weekend in Santa Ana, might give some hope to those who feel the Fairgrounds should stay as-is, under the control of the 32nd Agriculture District Board (The Fair Board). Yeah, I know - there's that whole smelly situation from a couple years ago when it appeared that the then-Fair Board was intent on snatching up the Fairgrounds at garage sale prices and feather their retirement nests. That's over and, with the amount of attention paid to the current Board these days, it's unlikely they will try that again.
Now we just wait for that appeals panel to digest what they heard and eventually let the world know. Tick, tick, tick...