As I wrote about earlier this week, rather than stepping up and doing the right thing in the Flint Water Crisis, Gov. Snyder is spending taxpayer dollars in court trying to get out of distributing water in Flint, Michigan as its residents continue to struggle with the poisoning of their drinking water with the powerful neurotoxin lead. Despite knowing about the presence of lead in Flint for nearly a year and a half if not more, due to lack of action on the part of Gov. Snyder’s administration, there are still fully 43% of homes in the beleaguered city that still test positive for lead.
Yesterday, a federal appeals court panel rejected Gov. Snyder’s appeal in a 2-1 decision of the U.S. 6th Circuit Court:
A federal appeals court on Friday refused to stay a judge’s order that requires the State of Michigan to make regular deliveries of bottled water to Flint households that don’t have a working water filter on their kitchen taps.
Friday’s 2-1 ruling by the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals marks the third time a federal court has told the state to begin the water deliveries, which the state argues is unnecessary and too costly.
U.S. District Judge David Lawson has twice ordered the state to start the bottled water deliveries to all households that the state can’t demonstrate has a properly installed and maintained water filter to remove lead contamination.
The state continues to fight Lawson’s order and filed a new motion this week saying the water deliveries aren’t needed because the unfiltered tap water in Flint now meets federal standards under the Safe Drinking Water Act. The City of Flint says in court filings it supports the state’s request to stay Lawson’s order.
The majority on the 6th Circuit said the state’s “disingenuous claim that the daily delivery of bottled water would be at an expense of $10.5 million a month, is not supported by the record.”
It’s time for Gov. Snyder to quit wasting money on court battles to avoid doing what he should be doing. This is a moral issue, not a legal issue. People are suffering and Gov. Snyder is directly culpable for this given that it was HIS appointed Emergency Managers that made the decisions leading up to the poisoning of Flint’s drinking water.
Many people are not able to schlep cases of water back to their homes from distribution centers in freezing cold weather. And they should not have to.
There’s one sentence in the reporting above that perplexes me and that’s that “the City of Flint says in court filings it supports the state’s request to stay Lawson’s order.” I would think that Mayor Weaver and her administration would be eager to see the state fulfilling its responsibilities in this situation and not letting them off the hook.