Three Years After Ill-Fated Switch, Flint Mayor Recommends Using Detroit Water

Mayor Karen Weaver of Flint recommended that the city use drinking water from the Great Lakes Water Authority, headquartered in Detroit.

Weaver's chosen option involves keeping the city on water supplied by the Great Lakes Water Authority, using treated water from Genesee County as a back-up source, and ending plans for Flint to treat raw water from the new Karengnondi Water Authority. Last year, she said the city of 100,000 residents would stick with a plan to draw from a pipeline to Lake Huron that is under construction.

After three years of confusion and chaos, Flint, Mich., residents may go back to the water source they used before lead contamination showed up in their drinking water.

Karen Weaver's announcement Tuesday is a reversal. A previous money-saving decision to join the new Karegnondi Water Authority in 2013 set the stage for the disaster when state-appointed financial managers controlling Flint in 2014 chose to temporarily tap the Flint River while the regional pipeline to Lake Huron was being built. But she has been reevaluating the decision partly as a requirement for Flint to receive $100 million in federal funding to address the man-made disaster.

The water problems in the city started in April 2014 when the city's water source was switched from the city of Detroit to the Flint River as a cost-cutting measure.

The Authority says the city will have the same rights and privileges as their other customers, as well as access to the Water Residential Assistance Program, or WRAP.

"This redundancy means that these member communities will be more secure in their water service should an emergency or issue with the GLWA system arise", said CEO Sue McCormick.

There will be a 30-day comment period before the proposal goes to the city council for approval, according to the AP. If you would like to discuss another topic, look for a relevant article.

  • Kyle Peterson