In a federal lawsuit settlement, the state of Michigan agreed to finance the city of Flint’s efforts to replace at least 18,000 corrosive water pipelines, according to the Detroit Free Press. In April 2014, the city of Flint began using water from the Flint River instead of the Detroit River. On Sept. 29, 2015, Gov. Rick Snyder officially announced Flint’s water was contaminated with lead.
This project has a budget of $87 million and is expected to be completed by 2020, in accordance with the settlement.
U.S. District Judge David Lawson is expected to approve the settlement this Tuesday and will most likely oversee the project.
The plan says 6,000 pipelines should be replaced by Jan. 1, 2018, and at least 6,000 more in each of the following two years, with the full 18,000 lines expected to be replaced by Jan. 1, 2020.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, the Concerned Pastors for Social Justice, the Natural Resources Defense Council and Flint resident Melissa Mays, the plaintiffs in the case, were fighting for door-to-door water bottle delivery for residents, but were not granted the delivery system in the settlement.
Instead of the aforementioned water bottle plan, the city agreed to implement a system in which residents can call a city phone number and receive a shipment of water within 24 hours of their call. This plan will be discontinued if the lead levels in the water are below the Environmental Protection Agency’s guidelines after June 30.
In a previous Daily article, Flint activist Nayyirah Shariff said a door-to-door delivery system would greatly benefit the elderly and disabled community in Flint.
“In large part, there is no door-to-door Flint water delivery, which is very problematic for a lot of the elderly population and the disabled population,” Shariff said. “Carrying 30 pounds of water is not easy, especially if you’re elderly.”
The settlement also requires $895,000 to be paid to the lawsuit plaintiffs by the state.