The state of Michigan officially took over Detroit on Thursday when Republican Michigan Governor Rick Snyder appointed a Washington, D.C. lawyer and bankruptcy expert, Kevyn Orr, to be Detroit’s emergency financial manager for the next 18 months.
Detroit became the largest municipality in history to be taken over by its state.
Orr, a black Democrat and a University of Michigan graduate, will manage a city that has “more than $14 billion in long-term liabilities” and faces a $327 million deficit this fiscal year.
According to the Detroit Free Press, Orr resigned his partnership at a Washington, D.C. law firm to take on the job, which Michigan will pay him $275,000 to do.
“It’s the Olympics of restructuring,” Orr said after Snyder introduced him. “Bankruptcy’s been my stock in trade for the past several decades.”
Detroit’s city council decided not to challenge Snyder’s appointment, making Detroit officially the the sixth city Michigan has taken over during the state’s financial crisis.