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L.A. school district renting land to horse club — at $39,000 loss

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — The city's school district is renting $14 million worth of land designated for a campus to an equestrian club at a yearly loss of $39,000, the Los Angeles Times reported Thursday.

"I want that property sold immediately, then I want to use that $14 million to buy land where kids need schools," said new school Supt. Roy Romer.

The district has been trying to sell the property for nearly 20 years, according to the Times, which said wealthy residents of the area have so far managed to block those efforts.

The financially strapped district pays $55,000 a year in property taxes on the 7.6-acre parcel, but receives only $16,000 in rent from the Sullivan Canyon Riders Association.

Some community activists were outraged that The Los Angeles Unified School District hasn't turned it into a campus.

"Los Angeles Unified has the gall and audacity to say it can't find enough space to build new schools. Yet it's been letting rich people use land for nothing," said David Eagle, a leader of the New West Charter Middle School Development Group.