Kevyn Orr is the leading choice to become Detroit’s emergency financial manager

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 13, 2013

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder is expected to appoint as Kevyn Orr as the financial emergency manager for Detroit as early as this week, according to a source. Orr is a lawyer famous for managing the Chrysler bankruptcy in 2009. For his efforts, he received earnings of $1 million. He is a partner with Washington-based law firm Jones Day. His experience lies in business restructuring. He has previously functioned as the deputy director in the executive office of the U.S. Trustee program, a government watchdog in the bankruptcy process. Court records reveal that Orr had billed over $1 million in fees when he served as Chrysler’s representative during the bankruptcy of Chrysler in 2009. Orr has yet to comment on this report.

Last Tuesday, during a hearing in Lansing, Michigan, the state capital, the Detroit City Council attempted to persuade the state not to take over the finances of the city. Amid a sharp decline in population, Detroit suffered a declining tax revenue, worsening crime, and having an expensive and out of date government structure. Snyder commissioned a report, which determined that this city with a population of 700,000 has "operational dysfunction" in its government.

The city also has an overwhelming debt of $14 billion and a present fiscal year deficit of $100 million. If Orr gets confirmed as Detroit’s emergency financial manager, he will oversee the fiscal affairs of the city, including asset sales, contracts, consolidations, and layoffs. Furthermore, the manager can make recommendations on the city file for bankruptcy protection. If the state permits this move, it will be the largest Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy in the U.S. Last Tuesday, the Detroit Free Press reported that Orr was the top choice for the job. Jones Day was chosen by Detroit Mayor Dave Bing as the city’s restructuring counsel.

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