Attempt to mediate Archdiocese of Milwaukee bankruptcy falters
Published: October 17, 2012
MILWAUKEE (CNS) -- When Judge Susan V. Kelley of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin had attorneys representing the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors and the Archdiocese of Milwaukee in her courtroom July 9, among the instructions she gave them were, "I want you to work as hard as you can on mediation." Proceedings in the archdiocese's Chapter 11 reorganization were stayed from July 20 through Sept. 20 in hopes that the case, mediated by retired U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Randall Newsome, could be settled. On Oct. 15, the archdiocese learned that a settlement could not be reached. Reasons for the lack of resolution were not released. "Under the court's direction, the parties agreed that mediation sessions would be confidential and comments regarding specifics involved in the mediation would violate that agreement," Jerry Topczewski, Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki's chief of staff, wrote in an Oct. 15 email to the Catholic Herald, a publication that serves the Catholic community in southeastern Wisconsin. "Although a resolution could not be reached at this time, we remain hopeful a consensual resolution will ultimately be reached," Topczewski said. In a summary of disposition issued July 3, the court said: "If mediation results in settlement of any or all of the issues in this case, the parties shall commit the settlement to writing, signed by all parties to the settlement. The court recognizes that settlement could take the form of a consensual plan or stipulated dismissal of the case."
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