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Decision Delayed on Sale of Northridge Land to Church

March 07, 1985

Los Angeles Community College trustees on Wednesday postponed for two weeks a decision on whether to accept or reject a bid by the First Baptist Church of Van Nuys for 80 acres of vacant land in Northridge.

The church on Dec. 6 was high bidder for the land at Devonshire Street and Wilbur Avenue, part of which has been used as ball fields for 15 years by the Northridge Little League.

League officials have thrown their support behind the church bid, saying they have been assured by church leaders that they will be allowed to continue using the ball fields indefinitely.

The community college district staff, however, recommended rejection of the church bid of $12 million, even though it met the minimum amount specified by trustees. The staff said the bid should be rejected because the church wants to pay the money over three years, although trustees specified before bidding began that the $12 million be paid before June, 1986.

In postponing a decision, trustees specified that the staff give both the church and the 51st District Agricultural Assn., which operates the Valley Fair, a chance to revise their bids to the minimum.

The 51st District, which bid $8 million, is looking for a new site for the fair, which must move from Devonshire Downs within a few years to make way for expansion of California State University, Northridge.

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