Negotiation is the foundation on which all successful restructurings are based.
DSI Civic deploys multidisciplinary teams with practical and actual government experience, including trained members of federal court-appointed mediation panels.
DSI Civic’s members, with their long history in the restructuring industry, have routinely negotiated with organized labor, vendors, financial institutions, bond holders and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation. DSI Civic is also frequently called upon to work and negotiate with state and federal regulatory agencies including the Environmental Protection Agency, the SEC, the FBI, the IRS and other taxing agencies.
Recently, some lawmakers have called for federal action to allow states to file for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 9 of the United States Bankruptcy Code. Although Chapter 9 may be a solution for some municipal financial difficulties, it is a solution of last resort. In fact, most municipalities cannot initiate Chapter 9 filings due to State Constitutional prohibitions.
If Chapter 9 is the last tool in the toolbox, it is also the bluntest. The best chance of success rests with the first tools in the box: negotiation and mediation.
Unlike corporate restructurings, which tend to arise from just a handful of common financial causes, the issues facing municipalities are not homogeneous. The causes of municipal fiscal problems are unique and have evolved over many years, some over generations. In order to address these issues, impartial, independent mediators are often useful.
Municipal fiscal problems are serious and real. Constituents and stakeholders must make all efforts to promote dialogue, and misguided attempts to gain leverage through threats and litigation will reduce the possibility of positive negotiation and mediation outcomes.
With decades of experience in successful mediation and negotiation involving some of the toughest and most complex financial and organizational crises, DSI Civic can be an important ally in diffusing difficult fiscal issues through collaboration and consent.