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No faith in Fair Association to manage fairgrounds

The Napa County Fairgrounds continues to deteriorate to the point it will take significant work to return it to a viable facility.

The Joint Power Authority (JPA) is still in the works, but the final look of it has not been made public.

Unfortunately, a significant percentage of the community has lost faith in current management and the current Fair Association Board of Directors. New management needs to be put in place immediately that cannot include any of the people that have for a number of years have allowed it to achieve the level of failure it is at now.

The current association Board of Directors will go down in history as the group that destroyed the fairgrounds for the community.

The community cannot allow the current situation to continue, even as a “placeholder” until the details of the JPA are finalized. It is almost as if the current management is working to guarantee the failure of the facility. I am concerned that because it has been allowed to deteriorate, the JPA will be forced to look at alternative uses for the property, which could include, municipal administrative offices, affordable housing, and since we need to figure out how to pay for those public uses, a resort facility. All of these uses will minimize, and eventually eliminate the property as a viable community facility.

Management’s thought of creating a Focus Group for creating a plan to reopen the golf course is just another “kick the can down the road” maneuver and an attempt to take away the blame from current management and the Fair Association Board.

I was shocked while attending the January Fair Association Meeting. Fair Management distributed the 2018 budget at the meeting, which none of them had previously viewed. Even though it did not even contain any information on the golf course portion of the budget, and even though they had not had any opportunity (or desire?) to study it, I fully believe had not members of the audience spoke up, they would have blindly approved it that evening.

We have lost the carnival. We are down to three sprint car events (for a total of five nights). The golf course was unusable prior to the fires, so to hide behind that excuse is BS. Daily, I hear of people that try to book events at the facilities (that bring in needed revenue) only to get the brush off, runaround and total lack of support from fair management. They have alienated most of the service clubs and large events such as the Christian music Rock of Ages event have gone elsewhere.

Scott Atkinson

Calistoga

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