City and state officials in Detroit are pushing to keep Detroit’s bankruptcy moving forward toward resolution, but a bond insurer threw an obstacle onto the road on Wednesday in the form of four rival offers for the treasures in the city’s art museum, Mary Williams Walsh writes in DealBook. Each of the four "expressions of interest" holds out the possibility that Detroit could obtain more money for its art than it could through a deal it has already been putting together, which would transfer the art collection to a new nonprofit owner to shield it from th e bankruptcy proceedings.

The nonbinding proposals range as high as $2 billion, including a loan for that amount from a specialized firm that would use the art collection as collateral. Other parties have proposed buying the art collection, or parts of it. By contrast, Detroit’s preferred art deal would provide $816 million from philanthropic groups; benefactors of the Detroit Institute of Arts, where the collection is held; and the state. In addition to shielding the art from a possible sale, the money would be used to help pay pensions to Detroit’s retired city workers.

Detroit’s creditors are seeking to maximize the amount of cash available to pay their claims, and the Financial Guaranty Insurance Company, one of the city’s many creditors, has asked Detroit’s bankruptcy judge, Steven Rhodes, to order the city to either let the four prospective bidders evaluate the art or else allow it to explore its own alternatives for using the works to raise more money.…;_r=0