DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – A mediator has been appointed to help resolve issues related to Detroit’s bankruptcy filing.
Federal Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes on Tuesday entered an order appointing U.S. District Court Chief Judge Gerald Rosen as a mediator in the case.
The order says “proceedings, discussions, negotiation and writings” from mediation will be confidential.
Click here to see a copy of the order (.pdf format)
Rosen commented on his appointment, saying his objective will be to bring the creditors and the city together “in a neutral forum, away from the glare of the spotlight” and resolve as many disputes as possible.
And he won’t be alone. Rosen is bringing assistant mediators on board to help with the process.
Douglas Bernstein, of Plunket Cooney in Bloomfield Hills, tells WWJ having a mediator should help the city and its creditors resolve their issues.
“A lot of its going to be over priorities and payment terms,” Cooney said. “… Judge Rosen brings this neutral approach to it, and may come up with ideas which bring the parties closer together.”
In filing for Chapter 9 bankruptcy in federal court, state-appointed Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr said Detroit is insolvent, unable to pay off debt that his restructuring team says could reach $20 billion. He has stopped paying on $2.5 billion in bonds, using that money to pump up struggling and underfunded city services. He also asked city creditors and Detroit’s two pension funds to accept pennies on the dollar in money owed them.
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