FACT SHEET:  Water Restorations in the City of Flint

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• Since Mayor Sheldon Neeley took office on Nov. 11, 2019, there have been NO water shutoffs in the City of Flint for lack of payment.

• Mayor Neeley ordered water service reconnected to all occupied residences in the City of Flint on March 12, 2020, based on the advice of Dr. Lawrence Reynolds, who serves as health advisor to Mayor Neeley. This action came more than ONE WEEK BEFORE the first cases of COVID-19 were reported in Genesee County and more than TWO WEEKS BEFORE Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ordered cities to take such action.

The City of Flint has turned on water service to 518 properties since March 12, 2020 (as of June 10, 2020).This is a monumental achievement for the City of Flint, marking the first time in Flint’s history that this many users have been on the water system at its current population level.

• The City of Flint DOES NOT REQUIRE PAYMENT for water service restoration to occur. 

• Generally, water service is restored to a home within one business day after a resident submits a completed request for water service. 

• The City of Flint did experience a temporary slowdown in water restoration services when the customer service department was shut down last month because of a concentrated outbreak of COVID-19. The City attempted to continue all services, but there were delays at this unfortunate time.  

• The City of Flint instituted a water payment assistance program April 6, 2020 to provide direct financial support for moderate to low income residents struggling to pay their bills, including those relying on unemployment because of job losses because of coronavirus. The $70,000 in funding has been exhausted at this time.

• Residents must live in the home at which they want water restored at no cost. 

• Water cannot be restored to structures that have been readied for demolition because the water service lines have been cut and plugged making them physically unable to actually get water service.

• There have been very specific cases which required further investigation before water could be restored. For instance, there were multiple instances in which an individual requested water service and the homeowner requested water NOT be turned on. The homeowner reported the property was vacant. However, under direction of the State of Michigan, the City of Flint is restoring water to homes occupied by squatters at this time.

• If a structure is condemned, water is not being restored because of concern that this creates a public health risk for those living in the homes and for employees who would have to enter the structure to turn on the water. The City of Flint has sought the advice of the state of Michigan to ensure this follows the intent of its order.

• Restoration of water service does NOT mean the water delivered to homes is free. All water customers are responsible for paying their monthly water bills and water service registered in someone’s name for billing purposes. However, as stated previously, no water service is being stopped for lack of payment in the City of Flint.

• There are more than 20,000 vacant structures in the City of Flint. It is impractical and would be grossly irresponsible to turn on water at every abandoned home where, if plumbing has been stripped from the home, turning the water on could cause massive property damage.

• Individuals who need water service connected should call the City of Flint customer service department at (810) 766-7015.

• The City of Flint also continues to offer free home delivery of water filters, test kits, and filter replacement cartridges. Please call our public health navigators at 810-410-2020 for assistance.

Updated June 10, 2020

 

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