Calif. agency OKs Del Mar Fairgrounds agreement

AP News
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Posted: Mar 09, 2012 10:38 AM
Calif. agency OKs Del Mar Fairgrounds agreement

California coastal regulators have signed off on a settlement with the operator of the Del Mar Fairgrounds, which borders a wetlands area.

The unanimous approval by the Coastal Commission on Thursday during its meeting in San Diego County ends a two-decade dispute. Last month, the fairgrounds agreed to make $5 million in environmental improvements through 2015 to settle claims that it violated state coastal laws.

State regulators said the fairgrounds improperly placed a concert stage and an overflow parking lot in the area. Under the agreement, the fairgrounds agreed to dedicate conservation easements and restore habitat.

The wetlands, home to diverse species of plants, birds and fish, recently underwent a multimillion-dollar restoration.