Flint announces completion of $17 million secondary water pipeline project

(UC) -- Mayor Sheldon Neeley of Flint, Mich., announced that a $17 million secondary water pipeline project, which will ensure the city a backup water source in emergencies, is complete, Flint Beat reported.

The announcement came eight years after the start of the Flint water crisis, the article states.

The Flint water crisis began in 2014 when the city began taking water from the Flint River without treating it properly, contaminating it with lead, the Associated Press reported. Former Gov. Rick Snyder declared a state of emergency in Flint in 2016. Snyder, his health director and other ex-officials are facing charges connected to the lead-contaminated water and deadly outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease.

Neeley said in a press release that the secondary water pipeline is another step toward rebuilding trust in the Flint community.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires having a second pipeline to be used in case of an emergency. Now, Flint has the primary pipeline connected to the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA), and a secondary pipeline connected to the Genesee County Drain Commission (GCDC), Flint Beat reported. Both organizations source their water from Lake Huron.

Michigan provided more than $350 million to Flint, in addition to the $100 million from the federal government, to help with water quality improvements, pipeline replacement, healthcare and more. Flint has conducted excavations to determine service line material composition at about 95% of the residential locations. The service line replacement program is scheduled to be completed in 2022, according to Michigan.gov/flintwater.

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