ORANGE COUNTY, CA-A last-ditch effort to force the Central County community of Tustin to give up 100 acres for new schools died at one minute past midnight this morning, when the state Legislature gaveled its annual session to a close.

Failure of the bill—which was being debated as the clock struck 12:00—apparently now clears the way for Tustin to sell most or all of the land to commercial developers. The parcel is part of the sprawling Tustin Marine Corp Air Facility, which was closed during the defense cutbacks of the 1990s.

Officials from neighboring Santa Ana had asked Tustin to provide 100 acres of the closed defense facility to build two sorely needed schools. When Tustin refused, Santa Ana Democrat Assemblyman Joe Dunn introduced a bill in the state Legislature that would wrest the property away.

A spokesperson for Dunn says the measure had a good chance of passing, but “time ran out. The clock killed us.”

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