The Michigan Office of the Great Lakes has released the third part of its water strategy for the state. It’s part of a 30 year strategy to ensure clean water is available across the state.
Part three of Michigan’s water plan focuses on the restoration of water quality and the protection public health.
Officials said 158 million dollars in low interest loans will be awarded to local communities to fund infrastructure projects.
Jon Allan is the director of the Michigan Office of the Great Lakes.
“These investments help communities piece by piece make sure that we’re delivering back to the citizens clean and safe drinking water. But also clean and safe rivers, beaches, harbors, and lakes as we deal with the waste issue as well.”
Allan said communities will be reimbursed for the cost of eligible projects once they’re complete.
The state is expected to announce a fourth part of its water strategy within the next month.
Each summer, many beaches along the Great Lakes are shut down because the waters have high bacteria levels. But figuring out exactly when to close a beach is difficult, and scientists are trying out a new test that could lead to safer swimming. Continue reading →
As officials continue investigating the Flint water crisis, some attention is turning to the water faucets in people’s homes.
State officials said older faucets and other fixtures can provide a significant amount of lead in water. They said lead begins to seep into the water when it’s stagnant in the faucet.
Officials are encouraging Flint residents to test their water immediately after turning a faucet on, and again after the water has run. George Krisztian is the Flint Action Plan Coordinator for the DEQ.
“Residents will be receiving a kit with two bottles in it. One 250 to highlight that the lead is coming from the fixture, and a second going to demonstrate that after the 250 mL bottle that lead should go down significantly.”
Krisztian said current water fixtures have lower lead levels than older fixtures. The state wants to collect testing data and then make recommendations to residents on whether or not they should consider replacing fixtures.
Lawmakers in Lansing are trying to prevent what they call, “a bag tax.” A House committee heard testimony today (Tues) about a bill to prevent cities from taxing and banning plastic bags at stores in Michigan. Continue reading →
A new federal designation will make the area eligible for healthcare workforce recruitment and retention programs.
The designation indicates a shortage of personnel in the areas of medical, dental, and mental health care.
Jennifer Eisner is the spokeswoman for the Michigan Department of Health. She said with the designation, the Flint area can tap into programs that will help keep healthcare professionals from leaving the region…
“So this is a really good opportunity to keep physicians in Flint, and recruit those who may consider going elsewhere to practice and entice them to come to Flint and service the population there.”
Eisner said the goal is to provide more healthcare options and create better patient outcomes in the Flint community.
Officials say a similar bill was passed last year that granted immunity to prescription drug overdose reports in minors. The new bill would expand immunity to all ages, and all substances.
Al Pscholka is a State Representative and Chairman of the house Appropriations Committee. He developed the bill and its predecessor.
“You know we should never be afraid to save a life so that’s what really started this whole conversation about expanding the Good Samaritan Act, and allowing for people to escape prosecution if it’s a medical emergency and you’re in the commission of saving someone’s life.”
Pscholka says in the state of Michigan, opioid drug overdoses kill more people than car accidents.
He says the original legislation has saved lives, and he hopes the passing of this bill will save more.