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Flint Mayor Says City Deserves Subsidies Until Water Is Safe

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Lead Poisoning LawyerFLINT -- Mayor Karen Weaver has renewed her call for the state to continue subsidies for two programs for Flint until water is "drinkable without a filter," and says she didn't receive formal notification of the support ending until earlier this month, according to The Flint Journal.

"I thought (payments would continue) at least through June," Weaver said during a news conference Feb. 20. "That's when we have our next testing round."

Gov. Rick Snyder has told the city the state will stop paying for Flint's water from the Great Lakes Water Authority at the end of February and will end subsidies for customer water bills at the same time because of improving water quality.

But there's disagreement between the mayor and state officials about whether Flint was given fair notice of the changes.

Richard Baird, Snyder's senior adviser, told residents in a meeting last week that the state sent notification to Flint Interim Financial Officer David Sabuda on Dec. 12 about the cessation of state-funded water credits.

That notification was followed by a news release from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality on Jan. 24, which announced the end date, and a formal notice Feb. 7.

Weaver said Monday she rejects the premise that the city's water is good to drink.

"I think we deserve the credits until the water is tap drinkable without a filter ... at least through March," she said Monday.

The state law that established the subsidies to the city allowed for payments to continue to be made as late as March 31.

City, state and federal officials have advised Flint residents to use faucet filters for drinking water despite water testing that showed city water met federal thresholds for lead and copper during the last six months of 2016.

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