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Report: State Could Put Del Mar Up for Sale

California officials are considering selling Del Mar Fairgrounds.

Del Mar Fairgrounds is one of several prominent state-owned properties that California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger proposes selling to help cut into a $15-billion budget deficit, according to a published report.

The 400-acre Fairgrounds coastal property, which includes the historic Del Mar racetrack, may be put on the block as part of a proposal Schwarzenegger is expected to announce May 14, the San Diego Times-Union has reported.

California’s state budget deficit currently stands at $15 billion, and may go as high as $21 billion if initiatives offered in a special election are defeated by voters, the paper said.

Craig Fravel, executive vice president of the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, told the Times-Union he couldn’t comment much on the proposal. The state in 2004 said the Fairgrounds property was the “most valuable commercially used property,” and placed its value at $1.4 billion at the time.

“We don't own the property. We're a tenant, and I don't think it's appropriate for me to speculate about what it means,” Fravel told the paper.

Other properties on the proposed selling list include: San Quentin State Prison near San Francisco; Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, the Cow Palace near San Francisco, the Cal Expo fairgrounds in Sacramento, the Orange County Fairgrounds, and the Ventura County Fairgrounds.