Experts, government officials working on long-term solutions in - WNEM TV 5

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Experts, government officials working on long-term solutions in water crisis

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Gov. Rick Snyder addresses the media during an announcement of new resources for Flint. Gov. Rick Snyder addresses the media during an announcement of new resources for Flint.
FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

Gov. Rick Snyder has named a committee tasked with overseeing long-term solutions to a city's ongoing water crisis.

The 17-member includes Flint Mayor Karen Weaver, Virginia Tech professor Marc Edwards and Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha of Hurley Medical Center. One additional member has yet to be named. Members will serve three-year terms expiring at the end of 2018.

In a press conference on Wednesday, Snyder and others announced several of the steps that have already been taken in getting Flint clean water again.

"This is about working together to address the issue," Snyder said. "This is about continuing to take action."

Weaver announced Edwards had been hired by the city of Flint to oversee all water testing.

She said he has been hired through private donations, and will be used to ensure independent, reliable testing is done.

Snyder said $28 million of relief has been requested from the state, and it has passed the state house of representatives. 

Of that $28 million, $3 million is earmarked to help ease the burden of unpaid water bills. 

"People should not have to pay for water they cannot use," Weaver said.

Others in the press conference attempted to address the mistrust of government. 

The interim Department of Environmental Quality director, Keith Creagh, said testing has to be methodical, but peace of mind for some residents could be on the horizon. 

"Through sentinel testing, we should be able to clear some neighborhoods," Creagh said.

Despite that, Creagh also said any announcement of safe tap water wasn't going to come from one office or agency.

"The all-clear is going to be a consensus all-clear. Not the MDEQ, not the city," Creagh said.

Everyone at the press conference repeated the same sentiment, 22 days after initializing the Michigan state of emergency, many of the steps being taken are just the first in a long-term response to Flint's water crisis.

"This may be a first step, but I'm asking for a staircase," Weaver said.

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