Flint, Michigan, will continue receiving drinking water from the region’s* Great Lakes Water Authority for another year without any increase in charges. The authority’s board voted June 27 and released a statement yesterday (July 5) on the agreement extension.
“This tragedy continues to increase costs for a city that is experiencing a public health emergency, and we want to reassure residents the GLWA will not increase costs to them through the term of the city’s agreement with us,” said CEO Sue McCormick in the statement sent to Colorlines.
Flint was set to begin receiving water from the new Karegnondi Water Authority this summer, but the Detroit Free Press reports that’ll likely happen sometime next year due to operational delays.
Technically, the Great Lakes Water Authority has been providing water to the troubled city since January 2016, when it took over the Detroit Water and Sewage Department.
The city’s water came from Detroit for nearly 50 years before it switched over to cheaper Flint River water —a switch that ultimately contaminated the drinking water with lead.
Mayor Karen Weaver cheered the extension, as reported in the Detroit News: “As the City of Flint continues to deal with the uncertainties and effects related to this man-made water disaster, having the assurance that the water rates will not be raised for at least another year is one less issue residents have to worry about.”
*Post has been updated since publication to reflect that the Great Lakes Water Authority is not a private entity.