Flint City Council discussing upcoming change in water sources

5% of water will be blended from Genesee County’s system before major work on Detroit water pipeline
Published: Aug. 13, 2021 at 7:37 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - The city of Flint is getting ready to make a big improvement in its water system by connecting its backup water source through the Genesee County water system.

But before that happens, the Flint City Council is holding a special meeting to discuss the details. Councilmembers Monica Galloway and Eric Mays called the meeting Friday evening.

Mays said the public needs to know right away whenever the city is switching water sources.

Having a reliable backup water source is mandatory under state and federal law in case of an emergency. On Friday, Mayor Sheldon Neeley announced that construction of the secondary water pipeline is complete and the city is preparing to connect to the Genesee County Drain Commission.

“We are making great progress toward building a stronger and safer infrastructure of the City’s water system,” he said. “This secondary water pipeline project provides the city with two water delivery systems guaranteeing that Flint will never use Flint River water again.”

Even though the Genesee County Drain Commission is the backup water source, 5% will be blended with the current water from the Great Lakes Water Authority in Detroit to keep the water fresh and running. Water from Genesee County’s system will undergo the same treatment process and be subject to regular testing and monitoring.

Most Genesee County communities receive water from the Karegnondi Water Authority pipeline to Lake Huron and comes through the Genesee County Water Treatment Plant, which opened in 2017.

The primary water pipeline system from Detroit needs some repair work, so there’s a plan to switch over to the backup source soon. But Flint City Council members want to make sure the entire community knows about what’s going on before that happens.

The want to know when will the city start using its backup source. City and state officials are reviewing the system to get an idea of a solid timeline, but they’re estimating roughly six to eight weeks.

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