Flint gets $77 million to pay for water projects

Flint city water treatment plant, Photo Date: Feb 3, 2016 / Photo: Americans LeDuff / Youtube / MGN
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FLINT (WJRT) (4/15/2019) - The city of Flint is getting $77 million in funding through the state to pay for water infrastructure improvements.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality announced a $77.7 million loan to the city. Interest will be zero percent and 100 percent of the principal will be forgiven, effectively making it a grant.

Flint Department of Public Works Director Rob Bincsik said the funding is part of the $100 million promised to the city from the federal government years ago. The funding was passed through the DEQ's Drinking Water Revolving Fund, which is forwarding it to Flint.

Flint will use the money on the following projects:
-- Completion of a pipeline hooking up to a secondary water source.
-- Improvements to the Dort and Cedar Street Reservoir and Pump Station.
-- Construction of a new chemical feed building.
-- Replacement of the Northwest Transmission Main.
-- Various water main replacement work.
-- Water meter replacements.
-- Water quality monitoring panels.

State officials say the funding will help ensure Flint's water system remains compliant with laws and quality standards designed to protect public health.

"These projects will help the short and long term sustainability of the water system in the city of Flint," Bincsik said. "But as stated in the Water Distribution Optimization Plan, the water system needs in excess of another $300 million in capital improvements over the next 20 years."

Other grants and loans went to the city of East Lansing for $51.7 million worth of water infrastructure work and and Monroe County's Bedford Township for a $10.2 million wastewater treatment plant upgrade.