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State panel seeking answers on KWA

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio

The state panel examining Flint's lead tainted water is looking at the pipeline deal that some say was the catalyst of the crisis.

Genesee County Drain Commissioner Jeff Wright walked the panel through the history of the Karegnondi Water Authority pipeline.

Wright believes he answered most questions about why the region needed the new pipeline and why the KWA doesn't deserve any blame for Flint's water crisis.

"I know Flint still has some concerns based on what has happened to them in the past,” says Wright, “The bottom line is KWA saves the people of Flint $600 million.”

But Flint city administrator Sylvester Jones says there are still questions that must be answered.

"There was a number of things that are just not possible to get the answers to because I guess they didn’t come prepared to share,” Jones said after Friday’s meeting, “But we’ll get those answers….more conversations to come.”

Flint officials have not yet fully committed to switching to KWA after it's completed this June, though the city is obligated to pay $7 million annually to pay off the project’s bonds.

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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