Arizona Coyotes ask lawmakers to create special taxing district for new arena

The Arizona Republic
Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Craig Harris

Despite being turned down by one key lawmaker, the Arizona Coyotes continue seeking legislation to allow creation of a municipal taxing district that would give the National Hockey League franchise a new arena, its president told The Arizona Republic.

One proposal floated at the Capitol would allow from $350 million to $750 million to be generated for an arena from sales and excise taxes imposed within a new taxing district. The plan, detailed in a 49-page draft bill obtained by The Republic, also could allow public funds to be used to build a hotel or other commercial real estate within the district, according to those who have examined the proposal.

The Coyotes confirmed they would want a hotel in any arena project — it would generate taxes to help pay for the arena — but public funds would not be used to build it.

The district's location and size was not specified, but only a community with a population of at least 150,000 people could establish a taxing district. By that definition, several Valley cities would qualify to create such a district.

The team would contribute $100 million to $170 million toward any project, according to Anthony LeBlanc, the team's president and chief executive. He said the franchise is looking to build on 50 to 60 acres.

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