NOTE: This post has been updated below.
Before he left the state for a holiday vacation, Gov. Snyder signed a number of bills into law. While he was away, Lt. Gov. Brian Calley signed a bunch more into law including one that bans banning or regulating single-use grocery bags and one that makes the illegal selling of fetal tissue more illegal. However, there is still one bill passed unanimously by both chambers of the state legislature – House Bill 5120 – that is still sitting on Gov. Snyder’s desk awaiting action. This bill, which must be signed before January 10th to become law, would compel the owner or operator of a public water supply to issue a public advisory within three business days after being notified that the lead action level had been exceeded, in situations in which administrative rules require public education regarding lead.
While I have to wonder why they are allowed to wait as long as three days to alert people that they are drinking water poisoned with lead, this bill should have been among the very first that Gov. Snyder signed before skipping town. It’s unfathomable to me why Gov. Snyder thinks the optics and the humanity of this move are good for him and his administration.
Congressman Dan Kildee released a statement saying, “It is frustrating to see Governor Snyder once again have no sense of urgency when it comes to helping Flint families recover from the ongoing water crisis. Right now, a common sense bill that would help prevent another water crisis is with the Governor, awaiting his action. The Legislature passed the bill unanimously – and all the Governor needs to do is sign it into law. But unfortunately this important Flint water legislation continues to sit on his desk collecting dust. The Governor should sign this bill immediately – Michiganders are sick and tired of waiting for the Governor to step up to the plate and help fix this man-made crisis he created in the first place.”
For those of you who don’t live in Michigan, it’ll probably come as no surprise that Gov. Snyder is term-limited and won’t be running for governor again in 2018. Talk about phoning it in. Most lame duck governors wait at least until their last year before giving up.
For shame, Gov. Snyder. For shame.
Be sure to read Detroit Free Press columnist Rochelle Riley’s latest piece featuring her interview with the bill’s lead sponsor, Flint Rep. Sheldon Neeley, HERE.
UPDATE: On Friday, January 6th, Gov. Snyder finally got around to signing this bill into law.