Photo via Pixabay
Photo via Pixabay

State and county audits have found that taxpayers have been denied millions of dollars in revenue from the Los Angeles County Fair Association because the private nonprofit did not pay enough rent for the publicly owned land it operates on in Pomona, even as it granted its executives rich compensation packages, it was reported Friday.

The separate, critical reviews determined that the county has been losing as much as $1 million a year in unpaid rent from a hotel and conference center and other enterprises the nonprofit association runs at the Fairplex property in Pomona, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The auditors said the county, which leases the land to the association, should seek payment of back rent from the organization. State auditors said the county likely gave up more than $6 million in total rent that it should have received since 2005 under a lease agreement approved by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

“Failure to collect all rent due under the terms of the lease allowed the association to retain revenue it otherwise would have owed the county and thus potentially contributed to the association’s ability to pay its executives such high salaries,” the state audit found, according to The Times.

Both audits grew out of a Times investigation last year that reported the association had paid its executives far more than other fair managers in California earn, while showing annual losses on its federal tax returns and drifting from its mission to promote local agriculture.

—City News Service

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