DETROIT – Detroit Mayor Dave Bing had surgery Saturday to repair a perforation of the intestines. He is expected to remain in hospitalized for the next five to seven days, according to a statement.
“The surgery was successful and the Mayor is resting comfortably,” said Dr. Scott Dulchavsky, chairman of the Henry Ford Hospital department of surgery. “The mayor will return to normal activities within three weeks. However, he can resume limited administrative duties as early as tomorrow.”
On Thursday evening, Bing was admitted into Henry Ford Hospital for what he claimed was “discomfort following a dental procedure”. It was later revealed that the mayor was suffering from intestinal inflammation.
Bing, 68, a basketball star with the Detroit Pistons during the 1960s and 70s and later a successful business executive, was elected mayor during a runoff election in 2009, his first ever position in public office. Bing inherited a $331 million budget deficit. While having shaved the deficit down to $197 million the city faces the possibility of running out of money by mid-April.
According to the mayor’s office, Bing’s chief of staff Kirk Lewis has been appointed deputy mayor and will act as mayor until Bing can resume his normal activities. The illness comes as a deadline looms over a pending consent agreement or emergency financial manager decree from Gov. Rick Snyder.
Late Friday afternoon, a ruling by the Michigan Court of Appeals reinstated the Monday deadline and allows a deal to be negotiated by a deadline Monday under Public Act 4, Michigan’s emergency manager law.
The court reversed a ruling by a Lansing judge that barred Snyder and the state financial review team from entering into a consent agreement until after a hearing next Thursday on alleged violations of the state’s Open Meetings Act.
Bing spokesman Robert Warfield said that the mayor’s hospitalization would not affect the negotiations. Snyder has been out of the country on a trade mission for the last week, but state treasurer Andy Dillon will continue the negotiations throughout the weekend.
Snyder is scheduled to hold a series of town hall meetings in Detroit starting next Wednesday. His spokeswoman, Geralyn Lasher, told the Detroit News that Lewis has been apart of the negotiations during the mayor’s absence.
“The priority is making sure the mayor will continues to recover and improve” Lasher said.
“We’ve obviously had dialogue with Kirk. Kirk is in constant communication with the mayor.”
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