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Glendale to use City Hall to help pay debt to NHL

PHOENIX -- The Glendale City Council will present the public with an option Tuesday that would see City Hall used as collateral for a loan to pay for debts owed to the National Hockey League.

Glendale Chief Financial Officer Diane Goke said the loan would be for $30 million total.

"We're putting up City Hall as collateral to pay back the interfund loans that we made for the Coyotes payments in 2011 and 2012," she said, correcting herself to say "I'm sorry, not Coyotes payments, the payments to the NHL."

$5 million of the loan would be paid to the NHL. Goke said the rest of the money would go for other things.

"$15 million would pay off the water and sewer fund. We have $5 million that would pay off the technology and vehicle replacement fund. Then we also have a payroll upgrade that we're doing for $1 million."

Goke said it not unusual for states and cities to try to use government buildings as a way to generate income.

"The state did it a couple of years ago," she said. "The cities of Tucson and Scottsdale actually did it back in the 1980s."

There's no word yet on who might loan Glendale the money.

The city council also held a closed-door session Tuesday to get legal advice on the arena management deal for the city-owned Arena. The deal has not been finalized, but a city spokesperson said Glendale hopes to release details soon.

The public meeting is at 7 p.m. at Glendale City Hall.

About the Author

Years with the company: I started on January 2, 2006.

Education: I was born in San Antonio, Texas, but we moved to Phoenix when I was one-year-old in 1957. I grew up here and graduated from Alhambra High School and attended Phoenix College.

Family: I live in north Phoenix with my wife Rene' and my son Devin.

Favorite food: Lots of favorite food, but our favorite restaurant is Fajitas.

Favorite spot in Arizona: The Little America Hotel in Flagstaff.

Favorite news memory: We have to go back to October 15, 1979. I was a country music air personality at KROP Radio in Brawley, California, when we had a 6.7 earthquake. Thankfully, there were no deaths and only minor injuries, but the entire community was pretty freaked out and listening to the station on their transistor radios. I would not want to go through an earthquake again, but it sure was a great night to work in radio and see how it can make a difference in people's lives.

First job: Working as a stringer for 'The Arizona Republic' at high school football games. My first real job was flipping burgers at the old Sandy's Hamburgers at 51st Avenue and Indian School Road. My first radio job was as announcer at KALJ radio in Yuma in 1977.

First concert: My Dad took me to see Jimmy Dean at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in the 1960's. It was before the Coliseum was built. The only thing I remember is Jimmy Dean singing his big hit "Big Bad John."

Favorite sports team: Phoenix Roadrunners minor league hockey. My dad took me to a game when I was in grade school, and I was hooked. I wanted to be a radio hockey play-by-play man. I used to take my cassette recorder and sit up in the rafters of the Coliseum and do play-by-play. It was great later in life to also take my son to Roadrunners games. Too bad the team just folded, I'll miss them. (Going to the Coyotes is fun, but they're not "my" team.)

Outside interests: My family and I are active in our church - Shiloh Community Church in Phoenix. Devin is a high school student at Scottsdale Christian Academy. He plays on the baseball, football, and basketball teams and sings in the choir. Obviously, we keep busy trying to go to all his events! We enjoy going to movies, sporting events, and long road trips. We like to vacation at the Beach Cottages in the Pacific Beach area of San Diego. And I love to play catch, basketball, football with my son.


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