City, state leaders lavish praise on bankruptcy ruling

Chad Livengood
Detroit News Lansing Bureau


— Gov. Rick Snyder, outgoing Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr and Mayor Mike Duggan had high praise Friday for U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes' ruling that allows Detroit to exit bankruptcy later this month.

The top officials and leaders in Detroit's historic bankruptcy held a press conference inside the federal courthouse in downtown Detroit following Rhodes' two-hour-long oral ruling from the bench approving Detroit's plan to shed $7 billion in debt.

"What you saw today was a tour de force of legal acumen, skill and opinion," Orr said at a press conference. "I've never heard anything like it."

Rhodes fast-tracked Detroit's bankruptcy in 16 months, blowing past smaller municipal bankruptcies in California.

"What Judge Rhodes has accomplished is hard to describe," Duggan said.

Chief District Judge Gerald Rosen used the press conference to issue a plethora of thank-yous to his mediation team, city attorneys, creditors, Orr and Snyder.

"He came in here as an outsider to Detroit and became one of us," Rosen said of Orr.

Rosen later commented on what he believes will be the legacy of Detroit's Chapter 9 bankruptcy.

Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr addresses the media as Gov. Rick Snyder, Detroit Deputy Mayor Ike McKinnon, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones listen.

"I think the legacy of this bankruptcy will be teamwork," Rosen said.

Snyder, who was re-elected Tuesday, said the end of the bankruptcy marks a historic day in the city.

"To put it simply, Detroit has a bright future now," Snyder said.