Detroit's creditors and residents are expected to get their first official glimpse this week of the road out of bankruptcy, even as fights and tinkering continue.
As early as Wednesday, state-appointed emergency manager Kevyn Orr could send the bankruptcy court his proposal -- called a plan of adjustment -- to restructure the city's debt. It's considered a blueprint for Detroit, which is undergoing the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.
A 99-page draft obtained last month by The Associated Press calls for massive changes that would leave the insolvent city that has an estimated debt of at least $18 billion with a nearly $336 million surplus.
Wayne State University law professor Laura Bartell cautions this is only the "first draft" of the restructuring plan and it's likely to go through many revisions.
Complete coverage: Detroit bankruptcy
Douglass Bernstein, of Plunkett Cooney law firm, said creditors will get a better idea of whether they should get onboard or keep fighting.
"This is going to be the framework of the city going forward as far as how the debts are going to be adjusted, payment terms, interest rate," he said.
The plan will be submitted with several unresolved pieces in the bankruptcy puzzle -- a deal to restructure the water department, the ongoing dispute over debt tied to casino revenue and Gov. Rick Snyder's $350 million offer for pensions and the Detroit Institute of Arts. The legislature has not approved Snyder's proposal yet.
"The plan that gets filed, whether it's this week or it's as late as March 1, will not be the final plan that comes before Judge Rhodes for confirmation because there are too many moving parts right now," said Bernstein.
The plan of adjustment is supposed to show the court how the city will provide services and pay for them.
"It's really a plan where ... show me how you can do it and convince me that this isn't just pie in the sky and that we're not going to be back in the same boat in a few years," said Bernstein.
An early draft calls for the establishment of a VEBA-style health plan, similar to what was formed after the Chrysler and General Motors bankruptcies.