By Andrew Keller, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
FLINT, MI (WNEM) -
Some Flint City Council members believe deciding the best way to supply water to residents for the future will be the biggest decision that they'll ever make.
For years, Flint residents have had to dig deep to pay for the water use every day.
"Water rates are quite high," said Flint resident Anita Brown.
Brown's like a lot of residents who are hoping for more reasonably priced water. The average Flint resident pays $150 to $200 a month for water piped in from Detroit.
"We need to get away from Detroit, that's our No. 1 issue," said Council President Scott Kincaid.
The Flint City Council is looking at ways to save on water costs. Monday night, the council listened as Genesee County Drain Commissioner Jeff Wright talked about the Karegnondi water line. That's the pipeline that will bring in water from Lake Huron to the area.
"The very first pro to this is the fact that the people of Flint will save literally tens of millions of dollars over time as compared to a 30-year contract with the city of Detroit," said Wright.
Wright is also on the board of the Karegnondi Water Authority. He says the city must decide soon of they want to be a part of the project. He claims if Flint joins in, residents could save more than $100 million on water expenses over the next 25 years.
"You'll also have some certainty that this is what we're going to pay for the next 25 years," said Wright.
But some council members say they still have plenty of questions that need answering before moving forward, especially with a project this size. Council member Sheldon Neeley said he'd like to compare the costs of joining on to the water line to treating water from the Flint River before he votes.
"This doesn't have to be a war against council members, it's just getting the information to make the best decision for the residents of the city of Flint and I think that is the most important thing that we can do," said council member Sheldon Neeley.
And there are also the question of whether it is legal for the City Council to enter a contractual agreement with the water pipeline while the city is still under the control of an emergency financial manager.
The decision to join on to the pipeline has been postponed until next Monday, when the council is expected to meet at City Hall to make a final decision. Whether or not that decision holds up is yet to be seen.
The total cost for the water pipeline is some $270 million.
The bill will be footed by those who tap into the system, so big savings aren't expected in the beginning.
But officials say those savings will be seen over time.
The pipeline is expected to be complete in the next 2 1/2 to three years.
Copyright 2013 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Friday, May 17 2013 7:16 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:16:53 GMT
One person has died in a crash near Harrisonville, MO, Thursday evening. The crash happened on Missouri Highway 7 and Walker Road. It involved a car and a tractor-trailer. Harrisonville is in Cass County.More >
Savannah Nash celebrated her 16th birthday last week. She died Thursday when her car slammed into a semi while she was texting during her first time driving by herself.More >
Monday, May 20 2013 6:32 PM EDT2013-05-20 22:32:53 GMT
A dispute has brought construction on Southbound I-75 to a halt. The state has issued a stop work order on a project to repave a portion of the expressway in Saginaw County.Copyright 2013 WNEM (MeredithMore >
A dispute has brought construction on Southbound I-75 to a halt. The state has issued a stop work order on a project to repave a portion of the expressway in Saginaw County.More >
ObitMichigan.com is dedicated to delivering immediate, up-to-date information on obituaries 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to families and friends in Mid-Michigan. Death notices are displayed during theMore >
ObitMichigan.com is dedicated to delivering immediate, up-to-date information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to families and friends who have lost loved ones.More >
Monday, May 20 2013 12:16 PM EDT2013-05-20 16:16:00 GMT
There were some scary moments for an Isabella County family over the weekend after they were the victims of a home invasion. Isabella County Sheriff's officials say a 30-year-old man kicked in the doorMore >
There were some scary moments for an Isabella County family over the weekend after they were the victims of a home invasion.More >
Monday, May 20 2013 2:01 PM EDT2013-05-20 18:01:03 GMT
A 20-year-old Hemlock woman is very lucky to be walking away from a car vs. tree crash that ended with rescuers cutting down the tree to free her. The crash happened Sunday morning around 9:30 a.m. SaginawMore >
A 20-year-old Hemlock woman is very lucky to be walking away from a car vs. tree crash that ended with rescuers cutting down the tree to free her.More >
Monday, May 20 2013 5:55 PM EDT2013-05-20 21:55:31 GMT
Tom Schaefer could not believe what he saw while he was at work Sunday. The business next door was going up in flames. Bay Valley Millwork is located on Wilder road in Bay City. Fire tore through the businessMore >
Tom Schaefer could not believe what he saw while he was at work Sunday. The business next door was going up in flames.More >
Tuesday, May 21 2013 2:01 AM EDT2013-05-21 06:01:07 GMT
(RNN) – A day after long track tornadoes devastated Shawnee and Edmond, OK, another round has begun near Oklahoma City.KOCO broadcast a slow rotating cloud that slowly extended down towards the groundMore >
At least 51 have died in a storm the National Weather Service described as large and violent.More >