Community Flint Water Crisis

City council push back voting on city’s portion of proposed water crisis settlement

The Flint City Council recessed its Monday Dec. 14 meeting with members not yet voting on acceptance of the city’s $20 million insurance portion of the state’s proposed $641 million water settlement and questions left unanswered.
There was not a representative from the city’s insurance present.
“How can I make a decision and ain’t talked directly with the insurance company?” asked Councilman Eric Mays. “I requested them for two meetings to be here”
He is advocating for “tweaking” the settlement which he has calculated will result in approximately $536 for each adult and was told by an attorney at the meeting a conditional acceptance is a rejection as a matter of law.
If the $20 million from the city insurance carrier is accepted, Flint would avoid the attorney fees and cost of potential judgments and be excused from the lawsuits against it.
Some council members expressed they feel the city should settle the cases now rather than risk municipal bankruptcy by not being excused from the lawsuits. In addition, Flint officials have said if the council does not approve the $20 million payment to come from the city’s insurance company, settlement money would be drawn from the city’s budget and would also result in a raise in taxes.
Council President Kate Fields requested a review of the deal by attorneys hired by the council.
“If I’m hearing from the attorney to say that even what’s being suggested by one of my colleagues President Fields is a rejection, is a no, then this council really should ask themselves ‘are we willing allow decisions that have been made by other people to now fall into our lap to say ‘even though this is not really a good deal, it’s the best we’ve going to get ‘cause if we don’t take this we’re going to put more of a financial impact on a community that really can’t afford it? asked Councilwoman Monica Galloway. “I’m just saying to my colleagues, ‘no.”
The meeting will resume on Thursday Dec. 17.
During the meeting, a letter was read a letter from the state saying the settlement will go on, with or without the council’s approval.

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