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Could there be a "Water War" between Flint and Detroit?

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

A battle is brewing over where the city of Flint will get its tap water.

Last month, the Flint city council voted to join a project to get fresh water from Lake Huron.   Supporters say the project will save the city millions of dollars by replacing its current water source: the city of Detroit.

But the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department is asking the state Treasury Department to veto the plan.

Bill Johnson is with the DWSD. He says state officials need to step in to prevent a “water war.”

“It’s a war of economics because of the tremendous cost that would be involved…to the entire water system in Detroit,” says Johnson.

Johnson adds that Flint would pay a bigger price than pipeline supporters are willing to admit to switch water systems. 

Since Flint is being run by an emergency manager, the Treasury Department can veto Flint’s role in the Lake Huron water pipeline project.

Pipeline supporters hope to begin work on the project in May.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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