After widespread rumors that the Del Mar Horsepark owned by the 22nd District Agricultural Association (DAA) was to be sold, the situation was clarified by Board President Richard Valdez at the January 12th board meeting. Horsepark is being temporarily closed because the 22nd DAA cannot afford to pay for water quality improvements mandated by the Regional Water Quality Board that would cost $6-8 million. The postponement of the 2020 County Fair and other large scale gatherings has resulted in a dramatic loss of income and forced the layoff of over two-thirds of the 22nd DAA staff. Some horse show events can take place at the fairgrounds proper, where over $15 million worth of water quality improvements have just been completed.
Cease and desist orders – Some restaurants in Del Mar have defied the state and county orders prohibiting indoor dining. The city staff has urged these restaurants to comply voluntarily and some have. Others, however, were referred to the county for enforcement and received cease-and-desist orders. The county has been referring restaurants and other businesses in violation of COVID-19 restrictions for prosecution and fines only after multiple cease-and-desist orders have been issued. No Del Mar establishments have reached this stage at this time. The County Board of Supervisors has pledged to up the level of enforcement, so any restaurant that continues to provide indoor dining is taking a calculated risk. If you want to support local restaurants, please order from the take out menus.