Yesterday witnessed two major developments on the Flint Water Crisis recovery story, demonstrating the type of bipartisanship “outside the box” thinking, that will help Flint get back on its feet.
First, only a few days after the Governor’s new task force first discussed the issue, financial relief for potable water bills is on the way for Flint residents. Essentially, the proposal would provide a credit to residents, that refunds the cost of potable water used for human consumption or use, during the time that Flint was not following federal corrosion control laws– with a few extra months added for good measure. This attempt to find such a rapid and reasonable compromise is unprecedented.
Second, Virg Bernero and his team came up from Lansing where they are gearing down their landmark lead pipe replacement program, to help Flint think about gearing up. With the expertise and experience of Bernero and his Lansing team who we partnered with back in 2004, it seems reasonable to think that if funding were made available (and we can determine where the lead pipes actually are!), Flint could safely and fully replace all their lead service line pipes in a few years.
We are already on record, suggesting that both federal and state funding should be made available, to make Flint a national model case study for pipe replacement.