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Detroit Union Concessions Battle Remains In Federal Court As Consent Agreement Looms

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Detroit Mayor Dave Bing stands with city labor leaders. City unions say they negotiated huge concessions in good faith and now the state of Michigan is putting pressure on the city not to sign their tentative agreements.
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing stands with city labor leaders. City unions say they negotiated huge concessions in good faith and now the state of Michigan is putting pressure on the city not to sign their tentative agreements.

DETROIT -- After more than three hours of arguments, a federal judge says he needs more time before deciding whether Michigan has illegally interfered in tentative contracts negotiated by Detroit and its public unions.

Judge Arthur Tarnow said Tuesday he'll try to decide on Monday or sooner.

Unions are asking Tarnow to order Detroit and Michigan to honor employee-ratified concessions. Unions say City Council hasn't approved their new contracts because Gov. Rick Snyder wants a better deal and has told city officials to ignore them.

The lawsuit comes while the council considers whether to approve a pact with the governor to fix Detroit's poor finances or face the appointment of an emergency manager.

Deputy Mayor Kirk Lewis says he expects Snyder will act Thursday regardless of pending legal challenges.

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