Detroit, state discussing extended role for EM Orr

Darren A. Nichols and Christine Ferretti
The Detroit News
  • Orr could be leaving Detroit City Hall as emergency manager soon.

Detroit – — City and state leaders appear to be close to hammering out a deal for Kevyn Orr's continued role in Detroit after his term as emergency manager expires.

Council President Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr. said late Monday that all sides are "close to an agreement" that will keep Orr in place until the bankruptcy case concludes in federal court. Then, control would be transferred back to Detroit's elected officials.

Cushingberry said the agreement is expected to be discussed Tuesday in a closed session.

Orr's spokesman, Bill Nowling, confirmed Monday that Orr's next steps are still being discussed. Asked if an agreement was imminent, Nowling said: "Not today."

"We are still in negotiations with city," Nowling said of Orr's potential transition out as emergency manager.

Under Public Act 436, the state's emergency manager law, Orr could be removed as early as Saturday.

State officials would not disclose details on what's being discussed. Sara Wurfel, a spokeswoman for Gov. Rick Snyder, said the goal is to "ensure the city can exit bankruptcy as smoothly and quickly as possible as that's in the best interests of both Detroiters and Michiganders."

"We are talking and working cooperatively with the city — both mayor and council— to see how that can be best achieved on this matter," Wurfel said in an email.

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