Placer Supervisors extend contracting authority for Placer County Fair Association, events to continue uninterrupted

Published on September 16, 2015

The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Sept. 15 to extend the Placer County Fair Association’s contracting authority for events at the Placer County Fairgrounds through Dec. 31, 2016.

The board’s extension of this authority ensures that already planned events, the All American Speedway and the annual Placer County Fair will continue uninterrupted while the county considers options for a new operator.

On Oct. 7, 2014, the board directed county staff to solicit for a new fairgrounds operator that would have the resources to launch a comprehensive re-branding campaign and address the site’s physical constraints. Two proposals were received through the solicitation process, and a county review panel determined they did not meet the necessary goals and requirements.

Over the past several years, the loss of state funding, the economic downturn, lower than expected revenues and an inability to secure long-term vendor contracts have been among the biggest challenges for the PCFA.

“What we’re seeing in declining revenue is in direct correlation with the decline of the facility and there is no clear resolution,” said District 4 Supervisor Kirk Uhler. “In order for us to continue to have a viable option (for operators), we need to invest in some improvements.”

An unsolicited proposer approached the county in August, two months after the close of the formal solicitation process, expressing an interest in operating the fairgrounds, and county staff continue to evaluate that proposal. Further analysis of the current operation of the fairgrounds and recommendations for more profitable management while the search for a new operator continues are expected to be presented to the board for further consideration Oct. 20.