County Extends Meat Packer’s Lease On Chino Ag Preserve Property

(August 9) The county has extended by two years the time a meat packing plant will be permitted to maintain its ongoing operations on county owned property in the former Chino Agricultural Preserve.
This week, the board of supervisors approved an amendment to its lease agreement with American Beef Packers, Inc. to extend the term from October 15, 2013 through October 14, 2015 for 34.77 acres of county-owned dairy land and improvements in Ontario for total revenue in the amount of $102,000.
According to David H. Slaughter, the director of the San Bernardino County Real Estate Services Department, “On May 18, 1993, utilizing funds made available to the county under the provisions of Proposition 70, the county purchased a 34.77 acre dairy, located at 7777 Schaefer Avenue in Ontario for $2,200,000. Following acquisition, this dairy was leased to the seller until December 2008. Because of unfavorable economic conditions in the dairy industry at the time, the county was unable to attract a new operator to the site and the property remained vacant until 2010.
California Proposition 70, or the Wildlife, Coastal, and Park Land Conservation Act of 1988, was approved by voters on June 7, 1988 and authorized a $776 million general obligation bond to provide funds for the “acquisition, development, rehabilitation, protection, or restoration of park, wildlife, coastal, and natural lands in California including lands supporting unique or endangered plants or animals.”
According to Slaughter, “On November 16, 2010, the board of supervisors approved a three-year lease with one two-year option to extend with American Beef Packers, Inc. for the dairy property at 7777 Schafer Avenue in Ontario for use in their beef cattle production operations. Loss of equipment through theft and vandalism that occurred during the time while the property was vacant precludes the use of the property as a dairy. American Beef Packer’s operation on the property includes the use of the corrals, but not the dairy barn and milking equipment.”
Slaughter said the amendment passed by the board this week “extends the term from October 15, 2013 through October 14, 2015 at a monthly rent of $4,250 which is consistent with rental rates for comparable dairy properties in the Ontario and Chino areas.”
Under the lease, maintenance on the property is to be provided by the tenant except for the residential septic system, roof, heating and air conditioning system, and all major subsurface infrastructure systems including water wells, well casing, septic systems and utility piping located on the dairy, unless the cause of such failure is due to negligence of the tenant.

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