The Flint, Michigan, City Council couldn’t come to an agreement on if they would approve a 30-year contract with the Great Lakes Water Authority, or, come up with an alternative plan, and so they just extended the current contract until September 30.
The Root reports that after heated debate, Flint, Michigan, City Council hasn’t been able to reach an agreeable conclusion. The only thing the council could agree to do was postpone making a vote on the long-term contract. The council voted seven to zero to approve a short-term extension, IE stale.
The citizens of Flint and other activists have shown up dressed in black as a sign of solidarity and made their presence known to help put pressure on the council to make an action. The mayor of Flint, Mayor Weaver as also put pressure on the council insisting that they approve the 30-yeah contract. The council also chimed to express their views on the matter at hand:
“My position is we’ve had two months to hold meetings and subpoena the public,” 1st Ward Councilman Eric Mays said. “Now it’s the day, it’s in the consent agreement. We’re at this deadline day and I’ve done my due diligence.”
“The rationale for the alternative proposal is how the citizens of Flint have been injured by countless bad decisions by the state government,” Councilman Herbert Winfrey of the 6th Ward said. “It seems unfair that the state would impose deadlines on a city in an emergency situation induced by the state.”
The mayor also took to the mic to speak her mind as well:
“Councilwoman Galloway, you made a point when you said our backs were against the wall, but our backs were against the wall from the council that was in place when the former mayor asked for an emergency manager and nobody spoke up for us,” Weaver said. “They sold our pipe, they took away our revenue source, they went to the KWA for 30 years and $7 million a year, and nobody said one word. … We’ve been asking for an alternative. We gave you 10 to 12 different options and said, ‘If you have something better, give it to us.’ We didn’t get it. We need it now…Our backs are against the wall because it is a public health issue,” the mayor continued. “So, what happens with the long-term plan—it eliminates the projected $10 million deficit in the water fund that we’re going to have in June of ’19. We save $7 million a year in bond repayment to the KWA. The long-term deal lowers the wholesale water rates, so we save between $2 and $2.3 million over the fiscal year, and by not doing the water plant, since we didn’t get the money for what we asked for, we invested in the infrastructure and saved $1 to $2 million annually. This contract needs to be approved, and it needs to be approved tonight.”
Words that fell on deaf ears because the contract did not get approved that night. This is a temperamental issue that seems to wrapped in business, and politics, and the only people that lose from that are the citizens of Flint.
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Source: The Root