Joe Nelson, Staff Writer
Created: 03/29/2010 03:44:48 PM PDT

The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors will resume private discussion today regarding the purchase of the Carousel Mall property in downtown San Bernardino, where a new government center is being proposed.

The board began the private talks nearly a year ago and has discussed other potential sites for county offices as far west as Ontario.

“They’re still conferring about it,” county spokeswoman Lynne Fischer said. She could not elaborate on what would be discussed during today’s closed session meeting or if any action was expected to be taken by the board.

It will be the first official talks about the fate of the Carousel Mall property with new County Administrative Officer Greg Devereaux, who the county hired in part to expedite the negotiations and purchase of the mall property.

“Clearly there’s significant interest in the property and being able to do something on and near that site,” Supervisor Neil Derry said. “I expect Greg Devereaux to play a significant leadership role in that matter. It’s one of the reasons that the Board of Supervisors hired him, for his expertise in those matters.”

The city of San Bernardino fully supports the board’s push for the relocation, but some members of the San Bernardino Downtown Business Association are strongly opposed.

“The current proposal of having a county government center as the centerpiece of the redevelopment of the Carousel Mall does not address the most vital needs of downtown, which is bringing people to a safe environment after dark and on weekends,” said Tim Prince, a Downtown Business Association board member and San Bernardino attorney.

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