Detroit’s historic bankruptcy filing is “unconstitutional” and must be withdrawn, according to rulings filed Friday afternoon.
Ingham County Circuit Judge Rosemarie Aquilina said that Detroit’s bankruptcy filing violates the Michigan Constitution, which bans any action that threatens to cut the pension benefits of public employees, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Lawyers representing the city’s pension funds and some retirees had won an emergency hearing Thursday afternoon to block the bankruptcy filing, CNN Money reports. The hearing was scheduled to start at 4:11 p.m. But at 4:06 p.m., word came that Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr had already filed the bankruptcy paperwork with the federal government.
Aquilina told those lawyers that she had planned to grant their injunction.
In three rulings she issued Friday, the judge wrote, “Plaintiffs shouldn’t have been blindsided,” and “this process shouldn’t have been ignored.”
In a statement, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette said the state would appeal:
Today Attorney General Schuette, on behalf of Governor Snyder, filed applications for leave to appeal with the Michigan Court of Appeals in the three pension cases before Ingham County Circuit Court Judge Rosmarie Aquilina. In addition, the Attorney General filed motions to stay the trial court rulings and any future proceedings while the appeals proceed. Later today, we expect to file additional motions seeking emergency consideration.
Aquilina, a Democrat appointee, also ordered that a copy of her order be sent all the way to the White House, saying that President Obama “bailed out Detroit” and might want to take a closer look, reports the Free Press.
Obama said Thursday that he is “monitoring the situation” but that the responsibility for Detroit’s finances lies with municipal and state leadership.
Article Courtesy of The Huffington Post
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