Placer Valley Tourism to Take Over As New Placer County Fairgrounds Operator

Auburn, CA (MPG)  |  Source: Scott Sandow, County of Placer
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The Placer County Board of Supervisors today approved Placer Valley Tourism, a private nonprofit organization, as the new operator of the Placer County Fairgrounds and approved a budget revision appropriating $2 million for fairgrounds repairs.

With an agreement now in place, Placer Valley Tourism will be obligated to complete at least $6 million in repairs to the fairgrounds, with the county paying a $2 million share of that amount. The county’s agreement with PVT covers the All-American Speedway from July 1, 2017, to Dec. 31, 2032, and the remainder of the fairgrounds property from July 1, 2017, to Dec. 31, 2052.

“We understand we are accepting a trust and responsibility here,” said Placer Valley Tourism Chief Executive Officer David Attaway. “We’ve learned how important this is in shaping those future generations through great programs like 4-H Club and FFA and other activities that happen in this space.”

Placer Valley Tourism’s plan for operating the fairgrounds includes the repair and updating of existing buildings and parking lots, and overall facility maintenance. PVT is also exploring the potential for building a possible future new indoor sports and events center and other amenities.

“I am excited about this opportunity and what it means to Placer County and the City of Roseville,” said District 1 Supervisor Jack Duran. “In order for the fairgrounds to be a win for everybody, the county, city and residents must work together. I am confident that we will be able to achieve success with flying colors.”

Placer County Fairgrounds operations are improving and will continue as the fair looks to celebrate its 80th year June 22-25.

The fairgrounds began operating in 1937 on about 61 acres within the City of Roseville. Operation and management of the fairgrounds have been handled by the Placer County Fair Association since that time. All the state’s 78 fairgrounds historically received fiscal support from the state. In 2010, the fairgrounds received about $350,000 from the state for operations, improvements and maintenance. However, that support dried up with the recession and the fairgrounds stopped receiving state assistance. When it resumed in 2013, state support dropped precipitously.

With the reduction in state assistance, the association has struggled financially and has been forced to reduce staffing levels, which affected facility maintenance and administration. The funding loss caused fairgrounds operations to suffer and the county stepped in, allocating $200,000 in 2015 to deal with deferred maintenance. Representatives from the association expressed support for the transition at today’s board meeting.

Realizing a need for new ideas and input, the board of supervisors created the Fairgrounds Revitalization Committee in 2015. The committee has been charged with assisting staff in developing ideas and refining concepts for fairgrounds repair and operations, and helping define a vision for the fairgrounds’ future.