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Flint lawmaker calls for action on overdue water bills

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LANSING, Mich. — Should Flint residents have to pay for water that was poisonous? It's the question State Rep. Phil Phelps of Flint is raising in an editorial published Tuesday in the Huffington Post.

Rep. Phil Phelps, D-Flint, highlighted the detrimental effect that water shutoffs will have on Flint residents who have decided to stop paying their bills, because of the poor water quality and high lead levels.  He says people stopped paying their bills when they learned of the toxicity.  The city is supposed to start issuing shut-off notices after a court-ordered moratorium comes to an end.

Phelps is also introduced the $28 million funding package for Flint which unanimously passed in the House last week.  In that package $3 million is set aside to help pay for overdue bills.

"A water shut off can lead to a home or apartment complex being condemned or considered inhabitable," Phelps told FOX 17 Tuesday,  "And there's so many more negative consequences that can happen after that. Water shutoffs can uproot families, make them homeless or it can lead to a whole family being torn apart."

Monday, Attorney General Bill Schuette said that if the water is poisonous, people shouldn't have to pay for it.

The bill is in the Senate and is scheduled to be taken up in the Appropriations Committee Wednesday afternoon. A vote will likely happen Thursday.

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4 comments

  • NO PC FOR ME

    If you recall the story of flint residents not paying their water bills pre-dates the tainted water.
    “Water is a basic human right” was the protest slogan of the day.
    And the rest of Michigan already pays and suffers supporting Flintastan.

  • Bob

    The residents of Flint need to pay their water bills. The amount of water a person drinks is a very small portion of the amount of water a house uses.

  • Let

    They defiantly should not have to pay for water that is killing them !!and so what the amount of water they use ? Don’t make sense at all .