Paul Giblin wrote an article for the Arizona Republic on May 5, 2013 entitled True Jobing.com Arena operating costs are well below what Glendale as paid. In it he states, “The true cost to operate Jobing.com Arena ranges from $5.1 million to $5.5 million a year…” Really? It’s based on fuzzy math. Below are 2 pages from Coyotes Newco, LLC. Coyotes Newco, LLC. Is the entity created and owned by the NHL for purposes of managing Jobing.com Arena.
The documents below show the proposed annual budget for the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2014. In it the total revenue figure is, to be precise (something others apparently failed to do), $6,931,477.00. Total expenses are $12,468,912.00. The net operating loss is projected to be $5,537,435.00.
Basic math says if you spend $12.4 million and you make $6.9 million, you are in debt $5.5 million per year.A net operating LOSS is not the same as the total cost to operate the arena annually. How can anyone can throw out a figure of $5 or $5.5 million and claim that is the cost to operate the arena? At best, it appears to be irresponsible and misleading to the general public. It provides erroneous fodder to the opponents of any fee paid whatsoever to operate the arena annually. Did I mention that this proposed budget includes very few non-hockey events? This budget is subject to change in an upward direction in terms of loss as more non-hockey events are added.
Has the NHL made money on operating the arena for two years at a total cost of $50 million? Yes, probably but since January, 2013 through the date of July 1, 2013 when a new manager is mandated to assume control of the arena the NHL has not been paid a single cent to operate the arena. So I think it’s fair to add another $6 million in expenses for these 6 months. While the city has paid the first $25 million the NHL has not, as of this date, called for payment of the second $25 million. It still, to this day, sits in a city escrow account, untouched.
Mr. Giblin also recites current rhetoric on the street that says that the LeBlanc/Pastor group are the frontrunners. They may be only in the sense that they are the FIRST group to have all of its ducks lined up for presentation to the NHL and the city. Are they first in the hearts and minds of the NHL? I doubt that. The NHL will accept the offer that is best suited to their needs. In an April 29, 2013 interview Mr. Daly said, “Yes. I mean, again, and I should clarify this. I mean, there’s no doubt that we’re dealing with Mr. Gosbee and Mr. LeBlanc and trying to work through and get to a deal with them but there are other interested people who continue, we’re working with at the same time as well. Nobody has exclusivity here (bold mine). Um, but obviously we’re getting close to having to make some decisions and sign some documentation and you know, we’ve got to work on it. I was on a conference call again last night. It’s something we’re working on”.
Despite the LeBlanc/Gosbee group’s effort to minimize others who are in the running to purchase the team, all others are still viable and not to be discounted no matter how much LeBlanc and Gosbee would like you to do so. Craig Morgan reported on May 5, 2013 that LeBlanc/Gosbee and the NHL would be in town on Tuesday, May 7, 2013 to meet with the city. Why Tuesday? Why not Monday or Wednesday? Tuesday is the scheduled City Council Workshop session. On its Executive agenda one of the items is a Coyotes discussion. This is typical Glendale. Who do you think the council will be talking to in Esession on Tuesday? You win! It will be the NHL, LeBlanc and Gosbee (or their representatives). At an upcoming Tuesday council Esession they could be meeting Pastor, Hulsizer, Reinsdorf, Kaites or Jamison. Take your pick.