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Cockrel appeals Cobo decision to state court

By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network

East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (MPRN) - Detroit Mayor Ken Cockrel has asked the state Court of Appeals to clear the way for transferring the downtown Cobo Center from the city to a regional authority.

The mayor is embroiled in a fight with the city council, which is trying to block the deal. A judge in Detroit just upheld the council's position.

Council members say the city wasn't getting enough for giving up the convention center that is home to the North American International Auto Show.

But Cockrel says Cobo is costing the city 15 million dollars a year at the same time it's facing a deficit.

A bill approved by the Legislature and signed by Governor Granholm also allows the regional authority to take over 100 million dollars in debt, and spend the millions that will be needed to upgrade and expand the convention center.

Appeals typically take months to be heard.

But Cockrel is asking the court to act quickly.

The law requires the transfer of Cobo to take place in less than two weeks.

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