In re: Tribune Media Company, et al
Recommendation that Bankruptcy Appeal be withrawn from mandatory mediation. Signed by Judge Mary Pat Thynge on 1/5/16. (cak)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF DELAWARE
TRIBUNE MEDIA COMPANY, et al.
WILMINGTON TRUST COMPANY,
TRIBUNE MEDIA COMPANY, et al.,
Bankruptcy Case No. 08-13141-BLS
C. A. No. 15-1116-GMS
At Wilmington this 5th day of January, 2016.
WHEREAS, pursuant to paragraph 2(a) of the Procedures to Govern
Mediation of Appeals from the United States Bankruptcy Court for this District dated
September 11, 2012, the court conducted an initial review, which included information
from counsel, to determine the appropriateness of mediation in this matter;
WHEREAS, as a result of the above screening process, the issues
involved in this case are not amenable to mediation and mediation at this stage would
not be a productive exercise, a worthwhile use of judicial resources nor warrant the
expense of the process.
In June 2013 after negotiations over the Fee Claim reached an impasse, the
Bankruptcy Court orders the parties to mediation. After multiple rounds of mediation, a
no resolution of the Fee Claim occurred. The Mediator issued its Report and
Recommendation in October 2014, recommending that WTC’s Fee Claim be
disallowed. The Bankruptcy Court adopted the Mediator’s recommendation on
November 19, 2015, from which WTC appealed on December 2, 2015.
Because the Bankruptcy Court entered the Order only after multiple rounds of
negotiation, mediation and motion practice, the parties believe further mediation would
not be beneficial and would not obviate the need for further proceedings in this Court,
and jointly request that this appeal be removed from mandatory mediation.
The parties additionally request the Court reserve on issuing a scheduling order
because WTC has filed Request for Direct Appeal to the Third Circuit in the Bankruptcy
Court. The Debtors have until December 18, 2015 to object or otherwise respond to
WTC’s Certification Request and the Bankruptcy Court retains jurisdiction to rule on this
request until January 4, 2016. If the Certification Request is granted, then the Third
Circuit still must determine whether it will authorize the appeal. If the Bankruptcy Court
denies the Certification Request, the appeal will then proceed in this Court. Because of
the uncertainty, the parties jointly request that the Court delay issuing a scheduling
order until final disposition of the Certification Request. If the appeal is to proceed, the
parties will notify the Court and propose a briefing schedule.
THEREFORE, IT IS RECOMMENDED that, pursuant to paragraph 2(a)
Procedures to Govern Mediation of Appeals from the United States Bankruptcy Court
for this District and 28 U.S.C. § 636(b), this matter be withdrawn from the mandatory
referral for mediation and proceed through the appellate process of this Court. Through
this Recommendation, the parties are advised of their right to file objections to this
Recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B), FED. R. CIV. P. 72(a) and D.
DEL. LR 72.1. In light of parties joint request to remove the matter from mandatory
mediation, no objections are expected.
Local counsel are obligated to inform out-of-state counsel of this Order.
/s/ Mary Pat Thynge
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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