Kevyn Orr http://michiganradio.org en Detroit retirees said "yes" to the city's bankruptcy restructuring plan. What's next? http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-retirees-said-yes-citys-bankruptcy-restructuring-plan-whats-next <p>Detroit retirees voted overwhelmingly to approve emergency manager Kevyn&nbsp;Orr's plan of adjustment.</p><p>That plan includes the unprecedented "grand bargain"--a mixture of public and private funds that will minimize cuts to city pensions, while protecting the Detroit Institute of Arts' assets from other city creditors.</p><p>But retirees aren't the only group of creditors who voted on the plan. Other groups did as well--<a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140722/NEWS01/307220112/Syncora-detroit-bankruptcy-grand-bargain">and not all voted "yes."</a></p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 22:47:24 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18480 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit retirees said "yes" to the city's bankruptcy restructuring plan. What's next? Detroit retirees say yes to the "grand bargain" in big victory for Kevyn Orr, DIA http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-retirees-say-yes-grand-bargain-big-victory-kevyn-orr-dia <p>The proposed "grand bargain" that would soften the blow to Detroit pensioners while preserving the city's art collection has cleared a major hurdle.</p><p>That's because city retirees have <a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140721/NEWS01/307210176/Detroit-bankruptcy-pension-grand-bargain-vote">voted for the plan by an overwhelming margin.</a></p><p>As city creditors, pensioners got to cast ballots for or against emergency manager Kevyn Orr's bankruptcy restructuring. The grand bargain is an integral part of that plan of adjustment.</p> Tue, 22 Jul 2014 04:37:02 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18461 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit retirees say yes to the "grand bargain" in big victory for Kevyn Orr, DIA We should learn whether Detroit retirees approved the "grand bargain" today http://michiganradio.org/post/we-should-learn-whether-detroit-retirees-approved-grand-bargain-today <p>We should know how Detroit retirees voted on the proposed “grand bargain” later today.</p><p>City pensioners had until July 11th to vote on the city’s bankruptcy restructuring plan, formally known as the “plan of adjustment.”</p><p>The grand bargain is just one part of that plan.</p><p>It would use more than $800 million in combined state and private foundation dollars to backstop city pension funds, minimizing retiree losses.</p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18446 at http://michiganradio.org We should learn whether Detroit retirees approved the "grand bargain" today A deep dive into Michigan’s emergency manager law http://michiganradio.org/post/deep-dive-michigan-s-emergency-manager-law <p></p><p>Three years ago, only a half-dozen cities and school districts in Michigan were being run by state-appointed emergency managers.</p><p>Today, 17 are in some phase of receivership.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">That proves not only cities and schools in Michigan are facing tough times, but that Governor Snyder is making vigorous use of <a href="https://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2011-2012/publicact/pdf/2012-PA-0436.pdf">Public Act 436</a>,&nbsp;the state's emergency manager law.</span></p><p>Bridge magazine writer Chastity Pratt Dawsey&nbsp;examines the effectiveness of the law and how it measures up to similar laws in other states&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">in a <a href="http://bridgemi.com/2014/07/emergency-manager-or-emperor-why-michigans-law-stirs-contempt/">report </a>for the magazine's latest issue</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">. She joined us today.</span></p><p>We also had Lou Schimmel on the show. He's served as emergency financial manager or emergency manager for Ecorse, Hamtramck and Pontiac. Right now he's on the transition advisory board for Pontiac. Our two guests explores a number of questions:</p><p><strong>First off, why does the appointment of an emergency manager result in such emotional responses from residents?</strong></p><p> Thu, 10 Jul 2014 18:31:55 +0000 Stateside Staff 18327 at http://michiganradio.org A deep dive into Michigan’s emergency manager law Detroit officials get pay raises http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-officials-get-pay-raises <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Detroit emergency manager </span>Kevyn<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Orr has </span><a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140708/NEWS01/307080120/Kevyn-Orr-mayor-pay-increases" style="line-height: 1.5;">given the city’s leaders a pay raise.</a></p><p>Orr signed an order hiking city appointees and elected officials’ pay by 5% on June 30<sup>th</sup>. It went into effect July 1.</p><p>Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan seemed genuinely surprised to hear that news on Tuesday.</p> Wed, 09 Jul 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 18302 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit officials get pay raises Weekly Political Roundup: Detroit Mayor Duggan's first six months in office http://michiganradio.org/post/weekly-political-roundup-detroit-mayor-duggans-first-six-months-office <p></p><p>The city of Detroit continues to work through bankruptcy, at the same time Mayor Mike Duggan, now six months into his term, has been working to return basic city services to residents in the city.&nbsp;</p><p>Joining us today were Ken Sikkema, Former Senate Majority Leader and Senior Policy Fellow at Public Sector Consultants and Susan Demas, publisher of Inside Michigan Politics.</p><p>Detroit remains under the emergency management of Kevyn Orr, but Duggan&nbsp;really positioned himself as more of a chief operating officer when he was running for mayor. How much of what we see happening in the city is the result of efforts by Orr and how much of it is Duggan?</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview&nbsp;above.</em></p><p> Thu, 26 Jun 2014 20:39:45 +0000 Jennifer White 18171 at http://michiganradio.org Weekly Political Roundup: Detroit Mayor Duggan's first six months in office Private trash pickup starts next week in Detroit http://michiganradio.org/post/private-trash-pickup-starts-next-week-detroit <p>Detroit is following through on its effort to privatize garbage collection.</p><p>Starting next week, a<a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140501/NEWS01/305010187/Detroit-trash-pickup-bulk-service-privatized"> private contractor will pick up the trash</a> for some Detroit households on the city’s east and southwest sides. Another company will start serving the rest of the city early next month.</p><p>Gary Brown, Detroit emergency manager Kevyn Orr’s chief operating officer, says the new system will offer more services at roughly the same cost.</p> Fri, 02 May 2014 17:36:25 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17466 at http://michiganradio.org Private trash pickup starts next week in Detroit House Speaker Bolger balks at state support for Detroit bankruptcy http://michiganradio.org/post/house-speaker-bolger-balks-state-support-detroit-bankruptcy <p></p><p></p><p></p><p>It’s Thursday, the day we talk Michigan politics with Ken Sikkema, former Senate Majority Leader and senior policy fellow at Public Sector Consultants, and Susan Demas, publisher of Inside Michigan Politics.</p><p>This week, Jennifer White, host of <em>All Things Considered,</em> examines the latest developments surrounding the Detroit bankruptcy case. Emergency manager Kevyn Orr spent two days in Lansing this week, trying to galvanize lawmakers to support a grand bargain to&nbsp;reinforce Detroit pensions while protecting the Detroit Institute of Arts. The state is being asked to contribute $350 million, but House Speaker Jase Bolger has balked at the proposal.</p><p>Ken Sikkema&nbsp;emphasizes that because it is an election year, Speaker Bolger will have a difficult time getting full Republican support to contribute state money to help with Detroit’s financial woes, and that in order for a deal to proceed where the state will contribute financially, it will rely on bipartisan support.</p><p>“The speaker is walking a fine line here, between driving a hard bargain to show that Republicans actually got something in the way of more accountability so that this doesn’t happen again,” Sikkema explains. “Down in Detroit, the pieces are starting to fall into place to make this happen and the last big piece is state participation. But he’s never going to get full Republican support for this, particularly in an election year, it’s going to have to be a bipartisan vote.”</p><p> Thu, 01 May 2014 21:15:42 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom & Jennifer White 17453 at http://michiganradio.org House Speaker Bolger balks at state support for Detroit bankruptcy Detroit EM tries to sell bailout to lawmakers http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-em-tries-sell-bailout-lawmakers <p>Detroit emergency manager Kevyn Orr is spending a couple of days in Lansing for closed-door meetings with state officials. His primary mission is to convince reluctant state lawmakers to support the Detroit bailout package.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The state’s share, which would have to be approved by the Legislature, is $350 million dollars. That would help mitigate cuts to pension benefits as part of the city’s bankruptcy, and&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">ensure the assets of the Detroit Institute of Arts are safe from the auction block.</span></p><p> Tue, 29 Apr 2014 21:09:14 +0000 Rick Pluta 17407 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit EM tries to sell bailout to lawmakers Stateside for Tuesday, April 29, 2014 http://michiganradio.org/post/stateside-tuesday-april-29-2014 <p></p><p>One of the most important aspects of the Affordable Care Act is consumer choice. More choice means more competition among insurers, and that can lead to lower costs for consumers.</p><p></p><p>But if you live in a rural area, you may not have a whole lot of choices when it comes choosing a health plans. On today's Stateside, we took a look at health care in Michigan's rural areas.</p><p>Then, Michigan’s new crowdfunding law opens the door to everyday people who want to invest in Michigan-based startups and small businesses. We heard about the benefits and risks that come with crowdfunding for equity.</p><p>And, we spoke with Garrison Keillor about the 40th<sup>&nbsp;</sup>anniversary of A Prairie Home Companion and his upcoming book.</p><p>First on the show,&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr is in Lansing today and tomorrow, getting face-time with the lawmakers whose vote is crucial to the so-called grand bargain, the complicated deal to protect city retirees and the collection at the Detroit Institute of Arts.</span></p><p>Orr heads to Lansing with a new piece of the puzzle in hand: a tentative five-year deal reached Monday with AFSCME, Detroit's largest employee union.</p><p>Detroit News reporter Chad Livengood joined us today to give us an idea of what progress has been made and what lies ahead for the city.</p><p> Tue, 29 Apr 2014 20:36:01 +0000 Stateside Staff 17402 at http://michiganradio.org Stateside for Tuesday, April 29, 2014 Kevyn Orr reaches tentative deal with Detroit's largest employee union http://michiganradio.org/post/kevyn-orr-reaches-tentative-deal-detroits-largest-employee-union <p></p><p>Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr is in Lansing today and tomorrow, getting face-time with the lawmakers whose vote is crucial to the so-called grand bargain, the complicated deal to protect city retirees and the collection at the Detroit Institute of Arts.</p><p>Orr heads to Lansing with a new piece of the puzzle in hand: a tentative five-year deal reached Monday with AFSCME, Detroit's largest employee union.</p><p>Detroit News reporter Chad Livengood joined us today to give us an idea of what progress has been made and what lies ahead for the city.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Tue, 29 Apr 2014 20:35:17 +0000 Stateside Staff 17397 at http://michiganradio.org Kevyn Orr reaches tentative deal with Detroit's largest employee union Detroit bankruptcy in cruise control – but there are big speed bumps ahead http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-bankruptcy-cruise-control-there-are-big-speed-bumps-ahead <p>Detroit’s historic bankruptcy case has picked up steam in the past couple of weeks.</p><p>The city reached tentative agreement with some of its major creditors, clearing the way for a relatively quick exit from bankruptcy court.</p><p>But there are still some key missing pieces that could derail the process, and now they’re mostly outside the city’s control.</p><p></p><p><strong>“Now is the time to negotiate”</strong></p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 13:57:45 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17358 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit bankruptcy in cruise control – but there are big speed bumps ahead With major settlements piling up, Detroit bankruptcy moves along at lightning speed http://michiganradio.org/post/major-settlements-piling-detroit-bankruptcy-moves-along-lightning-speed <p>This has proven to be a watershed week in Detroit’s bankruptcy case, which is now moving along at lightning speed.</p><p>On Tuesday, representatives for Detroit’s <a href="http://www.freep.com/article/20140416/NEWS01/304160130/Detroit-pension-board-general-cut">two pension funds reached tentative settlements with the city</a>.</p><p>The deals would spare Detroit’s retired police officers and firefighters any direct cuts to their pensions, while non-uniform retirees would take 4.5% cuts.</p> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 10:00:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17262 at http://michiganradio.org With major settlements piling up, Detroit bankruptcy moves along at lightning speed You don’t want to play poker with Kevyn Orr http://michiganradio.org/post/you-don-t-want-play-poker-kevyn-orr <p></p><p>Here’s the one thing certain about Detroit’s bankruptcy: You don’t want to play poker with Kevyn Orr.</p><p>The state-appointed emergency manager had everyone convinced city workers and retirees were facing a steep 26% cut in their pensions – a cut that would jump to 34% if they didn’t quickly approve the smaller amount.</p><p>The city was getting ready to mail them all ballots explaining the cuts and asking for their approval.</p><p>Then,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/voil%C3%A0">voilà</a>&nbsp;– yesterday, everything changed. Suddenly, negotiators came up with a deal whereby most pensions would be cut by less than 5%. Police and fire retirees pensions won’t be cut at all.</p><p>There seems little doubt that the 32,000 employees and retirees will approve this deal. Yet we need to remember two things. First of all, this is not final yet – not by a long shot.</p><p>Something else that’s still very uncertain has to happen first. The Michigan Legislature has to approve contributing $350 million to a fund designed to shore up the pensions and protect any of the work in the city-owned collections in the Detroit Institute of Arts from being possibly sold for the benefit of the creditors. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:29:13 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 17250 at http://michiganradio.org You don’t want to play poker with Kevyn Orr Bankruptcy case delays Detroit's usual budget process http://michiganradio.org/post/bankruptcy-case-delays-detroits-usual-budget-process <p>Detroit’s bankruptcy case is throwing a wrench in the city’s usual budget process.</p><p>Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan didn’t give his charter-mandated city budget address as scheduled Monday.</p><p>Rather, officials told City Council members that Detroit needs to update its plan of adjustment first. That’s the city’s restructuring blueprint for getting through bankruptcy.</p><p>Detroit chief financial officer John Hill said that since the plan will shape the city budget, it doesn’t make sense start talking now.</p> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 03:20:36 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17227 at http://michiganradio.org Bankruptcy case delays Detroit's usual budget process Detroit bankruptcy judge ok's swaps settlement; says "now is the time to negotiate" http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-bankruptcy-judge-oks-swaps-settlement-says-now-time-negotiate <p>Judge Steven Rhodes approved a key settlement in Detroit’s historic bankruptcy case Friday.</p><p>The deal will <a href="http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140411/METRO01/304110047/Judge-OKs-85M-Detroit-debt-deal-2-banks?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE">settle a costly interest-rate swaps agreemen</a>t with two banks, UBS and Bank of America, for $85 million.</p><p>Emergency manager Kevyn Orr has pushed hard for such a deal. Detroit had guaranteed the swaps with casino revenue, and paid out about $200 million since 2009.</p> Sat, 12 Apr 2014 01:11:17 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17213 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit bankruptcy judge ok's swaps settlement; says "now is the time to negotiate" Detroit bondholders will be paid 74 cents on the dollar; working women can relate http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-bondholders-will-be-paid-74-cents-dollar-working-women-can-relate <p></p><p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">If you heard my commentary yesterday on the latest in the Detroit bankruptcy battles, I began with the news that the city had reached a deal with the holders of its general obligation bonds.</span></p><p>All we knew then was that an agreement had been reached, and I said the bondholders were, to quote myself, “evidently going to settle for less than 20 cents on every dollar owed them.”</p><p>Well, I was astonishingly far off.</p><p>In fact, they ended up settling for 74 cents for every dollar. But there is a reason why I was so wrong.</p> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 14:14:38 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 17176 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit bondholders will be paid 74 cents on the dollar; working women can relate Breakthrough settlement announced in Detroit bankruptcy case http://michiganradio.org/post/breakthrough-settlement-announced-detroit-bankruptcy-case <p>Mediators in Detroit’s bankruptcy case have made a potentially huge breakthrough with some of the city’s bondholders.</p><p>Bondholders are one of the city’s biggest groups of unsecured creditors.</p><p>That means they’re also one of the most important groups for emergency manager Kevyn Orr to get on board with his plan of adjustment, and avoid a protracted legal battle that could bog the city down in bankruptcy court for months or years.</p><p>Now, negotiators for the city and three major bond insurers have announced a settlement deal.</p> Wed, 09 Apr 2014 15:43:24 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17160 at http://michiganradio.org Breakthrough settlement announced in Detroit bankruptcy case Key ruling expected this week in Detroit bankruptcy http://michiganradio.org/post/key-ruling-expected-week-detroit-bankruptcy <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">J</span>udge Steven Rhodes will make a major ruling in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy case this week.</p><p>Rhodes will decide whether the city can settle an interest-rate swaps deal with two major banks for $85 million.</p><p>Detroit had hoped to hedge against interest rates rising when it entered into the swaps deal on some city pension debt in 2006.</p><p>But interest rates fell to nearly 0, and Detroit has been forced to shell out about $200 million to UBS and Bank of America since 2009.</p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 09:30:00 +0000 Sarah Cwiek 17124 at http://michiganradio.org Key ruling expected this week in Detroit bankruptcy Detroit bankruptcy struggle now affects Water and Sewerage Department http://michiganradio.org/post/detroit-bankruptcy-struggle-now-affects-water-and-sewerage-department <p>The spotlight of the Detroit bankruptcy struggle is widening. From the DIA&nbsp;to the retirees and now to water.</p><p>As the clock ticks, emergency manager Kevyn Orr has fired the latest salvo in the increasingly testy talks with county representatives over the future of the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department.</p><p>Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes joined us today to discuss the issue.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Thu, 03 Apr 2014 20:53:54 +0000 Stateside Staff 17089 at http://michiganradio.org Detroit bankruptcy struggle now affects Water and Sewerage Department