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Capitals vs Devils February 2013
A faceoff from the last NHL game the hubby and I attended when we visited Washington, D.C., several years ago. Go Caps! (Photo by Kay Bell)

While many U.S. taxpayers are pondering whether to pay their annual real estate by year's end to add to potential increased itemized deductions — C'mon already Congress; decide yea or nay on any state and local taxes (SALT) changes so we can act! — a professional hockey team is simply trying to straighten out the tax situation on its property.

The National Hockey League's Arizona Coyotes have until Dec. 20 to pay delinquent tax bills or face eviction from their home ice at Gila River Arena. According to various news reports, the NHL team also faces some other arena charges.

The total due is more than $1.3 million.

The City of Glendale reportedly is owed around $250,000 in unpaid taxes. The bigger balance of the delinquent taxes are due the Arizona Department of Revenue, which per a report from ESPN, filed a tax lien notice against IceArizona Hockey LLC, which owns the Coyotes, earlier this month.

Eviction alert: While the Grand Canyon State is owed the larger amount, the more immediate threat to the Coyotes is from Glendale. City officials have told the team that unless it gets its money by Dec. 20, the team will have to find another place to play home games.

So what's the problem? The reason given by the NHL team is one that tax officials have heard before.

"We have already launched an investigation to determine how this could have happened and the initial indications are that it appears to be the result of an unfortunate human error,'' the Coyotes said in a statement, adding:

"Regardless, we deeply regret the inconvenience this has caused. We will make sure by tomorrow morning, the Arizona Coyotes are current on all of our bills and owe no state or local taxes whatsoever. And we will take immediate steps to ensure nothing like this can ever possibly happen again.''


As a hockey fan, but more importantly as a taxpayer, I feel the team's pain of facing a big bill.

But as noted in the Coyotes' statement, you guys really need to work on your financial and administrative drills, as well as the on-ice ones.

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