As many people may know by now, there's a story out there on the KC Chiefs, KC Royals and the way they use some taxpayer money. Here's the Royals-centric story from 810 WHB's Kevin Kietzmann and the Chiefs-centric story from Deadspin.
Read them and let us know what you think. They're both basically the same thing.
I have a few thoughts, questions and reactions to this. I'm by no means an expert and took plenty of time just to understand what this was about in the first place. (Ms. Primetime, despite being a tax accountant, was no help here.) Anyone who knows more about how this stuff works, drop a line in the comments section.
But based on the information available -- neither team has, as far as I can tell, addressed this publicly -- here are a few thoughts.
1. It seems shady. Again, I'm not an expert, but the way the story is presented certainly comes off as if this is some sort of under-the-table deal that the public didn't know about. Kietzmann knows what he's doing so he keyed in on this point, which was sure to get people riled up: "By using the money for payroll taxes, the team literally collected taxpayer money to pay their own taxes." The "team" there is the Royals but the same applies to the Chiefs.
2. No one, as far as I can tell, is saying the Chiefs have done anything illegal. This is important.
3. Player salary is not included in this. So this isn't a salary cap situation. Doesn't affect the Chiefs on the field which, in the big picture, is what we care about on a Chiefs blog.
4. Something I don't understand about this particular line from Kietzmann:
Calls to JCSCA Chairman Beto Lopez and Royals President Dan Glass were not returned.
Jackson County officials meet and vote Monday, August 6 to nominate Lopez for a new term as Chairman and then send it to Missouri Governor Jay Nixon. Missouri Governors, by law, appoint all members of the JCSCA.
So a story that makes the JCSCA (Jackson County Sports Complex Authority) look incompetent comes out days before officials are about to nominate the Chairman for a new term?
If accurate, surely that can't be a coincidence. Who is trying to make the JCSCA look bad? That said...
5. The Jackson County Sports Authority does come off as the real loser in the story.
6. Billionaires become billionaires for a reason. Or in the case of Clark Hunt, they stay billionaires for a reason. They don't do dumb deals.
7. The most annoying part of this is that many people are becoming experts on each team's stadium lease and the way taxes work. I'm definitely not an expert so, while I wish I could provide you some insight into what this is, I just don't know. Don't be afraid to admit what you don't know!