Wednesday, December 01, 2010

State Fair Employees Hear Their Fate

Just after noon today the Mona Shadia in the Daily Pilot, quoting an unnamed Fairgrounds official, reported that today more than 100 current all year-around employees of the Orange County Fair and Event Center will receive 120-day layoff notices at a meeting at 2:00 p.m. You can read Mona's article HERE. There is apparently a subsequent meeting with Facilities Management West officials to inform the ousted employees of it's plans. It will be like the other shoe dropping.

Perhaps the most provocative paragraph in Mona's story is the one that quotes that unnamed official as stating, "The bottom line is we don't trust them anymore," said the official, who requested anonymity. "We don't trust that they are looking after our best interest, or our families' best interest. This is going to be sad, it's right before the holidays. We've been told there's nothing to worry about, don't even pay attention to the media, don't talk to the media, and that we can get fired if we talk to the media." One must assume the official is talking about the Fair Board, but it's not clear.

It's also unclear at this time whether Facilities Management West, the presumed purchaser of the Fairgrounds, will attempt to retain many, or any, of the current employees. The list of those receiving layoff notices apparently also includes Steve Beazley, CEO of the Fairgrounds.

The timing of this event is curious since the sale of the Fairgrounds is stalled by a court ruling. Theoretically, nothing is happening until after a hearing next week, on December 8th. According to a source within the State Department of General Services, they are ready to move forward with the closure of the sale but must wait for the results of the court hearing. And, it is also unclear whether incoming Governor Jerry Brown is sympathetic to the sale of the Fairgrounds, so if this process gets stalled until he officially takes office there might be a chance that the whole long, convoluted fiasco that has sapped the energy from almost everyone involved over the past 18 months may be quashed before the sale can be consummated.

I expect we'll hear more about today's meetings after they've been completed. I'll let you know what I know, when I know it.

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Anonymous Sphinx said...

that should teach you not to ever quote mona shadia. she is useless.

12/02/2010 03:42:00 PM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Sphinx, you're way too harsh! She posted her story early, before the actual State meeting, based on info she had received. Later she updated it - after my original story. She did what she could with what she had available to her. I'm lucky - I don't have an editor nor a deadline...

12/02/2010 04:52:00 PM  

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