Court-ordered talks lead to breakthrough on Flint water - WNEM TV 5

Court-ordered talks lead to breakthrough on Flint water

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

The Flint City Council is expected to support a 30-year agreement to get drinking water from a regional agency after an afternoon of court-ordered negotiations.

The deal means the Great Lakes Water Authority would continue to serve Flint. It has been providing water since fall 2015 when Gov. Rick Snyder acknowledged a lead crisis related to the city's use of the Flint River.

The council is expected to vote Tuesday night. Mayor Karen Weaver already is on board.  

Under the deal, a Flint resident would be appointed to the governing board of the Great Lakes Water Authority. The city would also be relieved of debt payments owed to the Karegnondi Water Authority.

All sides worked with a mediator Monday under orders by Detroit federal Judge David Lawson.

"We are asking the judge for some additional time. I believe we need it. I don't know if we'll have all the information we need within a week," Council Member Kate Fields said.

Fields said the contract as it is written does not set a cap in the price it would charge.

"So that contract means we know they can raise at least 4 percent and with no guarantee you're on the commodity. Who knows, they could change it. So far there's nothing written. They could change it to whatever they want," Fields said.

Mayor Karen Weaver has already signed off on the 30-year contract with GLWA. She said Flint residents should not have to go through another water switch.

Flint resident Maegan Wilson attended Monday's meeting. She said the city was on the right track when it planned to join the newly created Karegnondi Water Authority - the new water source that will soon be used by several communities across Genesee County.

"I'm not in agreement with the 30-year contract. I just don't think we should give up the KWA," Wilson said.

Wilson thinks the people of Flint should decide.

"Our kids and our future matter. It's just not fair that they're not letting us make a decision," Wilson said.

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