There’s no relief in sight for the people of Flint, Michigan. Despite all that the public now knows about the disastrous water crisis, Gov. Rick Synder announced on Wednesday that a retooling of the city’s lead pipes “is not imminent.” An entire population sustained lead poisoning, which has granted a generation of children with potentially irreversible brain damage. Yet Snider still sees pipe replacement as part of “a long-term consideration.”
This odd strategy arrives despite a new lawsuit from civil-rights and environmental groups that demands the immediate replacement of said pipes. This won’t help Snyder’s standing among citizens, and it’s bizarre that he’s continuing part of the charade. Flint has celebrities like Meek Mill to thank for getting the word out, and the the media finally caught up (although Uproxx covered the story last October). Meanwhile, Michael Moore has told the world to stop sending bottled water and start a revolt instead. This request will find more ammunition in a new report detailed from the Detroit Free Press. Man, this is shady stuff:
A Jan. 7, 2015, notice from the state Department of Technology, Management and Budget, which oversees state office buildings, references a notice about a violation of drinking water standards that had recently been sent out by the City of Flint.
“While the City of Flint states that corrective actions are not necessary, DTMB is in the process of providing a water cooler on each occupied floor, positioned near the water fountain, so you can choose which water to drink,” said the notice. “The coolers will arrive today and will be provided as long as the public water does not meet treatment requirements.”
These coolers appeared even as authorities assured Flint residents that everything was dandy. This ongoing farce was best illustrated by former Mayor Dayne Walling claiming to guzzle tap water despite its obvious cosmetic issues, and this January cooler business is even sketchier. Meanwhile, Snyder continues to pretend that pipe replacement can be indefinitely postponed. As Moore pointed out, all the water bottles in the world won’t solve the crisis. One more telling detail has emerged in this scandal — citizens were paying abnormally high rates for this poisoned water. So, they were being simultaneously gouged and poisoned.
Local and state authorities may have dropped the ball, but Senate Democrats have proposed $400 million in funding for Flint. This is only half of the estimated cost for full pipe replacement, but it’s more than the people of Flint would otherwise receive.