Capital Catch-Up: September 19, 2022
Filter First Legislation Will Protect Kids, Ensure Safe Drinking Water in Schools
From the City of Leslie in Ingham County to Benton Harbor and Flint, lead contamination remains in Michigan’s drinking water. Leaded plumbing, fixtures, and service lines pose a particular threat to the developing brain.
Woman carries away a case of bottled water after lead contamination was found in Benton Harbor’s drinking water (Photo Credit: Detroit Free Press).
As action in Lansing picks up again after the summer recess, safe drinking water advocates are pushing for a Senate vote on Tuesday, September 20 on critical Filter First legislation – Senate Bills 184 and 185 – aimed at ensuring clean, safe drinking water in Michigan schools.
Photo Credit: Detroit Free Press.
With the school year already underway, the slow, costly process of replacing all existing leaded water infrastructure is simply not a realistic option to protect the health and safety of our children. Instead, SB 184 and SB 185 would require the installation of hydration station water fixtures with filters that meet the NSF 53 standard for lead reduction and NSF 42 for particulate reduction, standards that are proven to remove lead that has leached into the water as it traveled through the pipes, fixtures, and fittings.
Photo Credit: Elkay.
With the passage of Senate Bill 565 earlier this year, $50 million has already been appropriated to cover the cost of implementing Filter First in schools and childcare facilities.
Senate Candidates Embrace MLCV’s Top Water Issues
With the November 8 general election fast approaching, a number of candidates for Michigan Senate are embracing messaging on the importance of safe drinking water and holding polluters accountable for water contamination.
Former State Representative Sam Singh – who is running in Senate District 28 (East Lansing and Ingham County) recently put out a new ad called “Polluter Pay,” stressing the importance of holding polluters accountable for the cost of cleanup and remediation of drinking water contamination.
Similarly in Senate District 30 in northern Kent County, State Rep. David LaGrand launched his own ad, “Waters,” while State Rep. Kevin Hertel, running in Macomb County’s Senate District 12 – which snakes along the shoreline of Lake St. Clair, popped up with an ad called “Water Is Wet.”
As threats to our water in Michigan persist, electing candidates to the Senate who are working to create change and protect our drinking water and Great Lakes is essential.
Gov. Whitmer Announces New Mobility & Electrification Plan
Last week, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the MI Future Mobility Plan, a statewide strategy that will help ensure Michigan remains a global leader in mobility and electrification moving into the future. The plan lays out a timeline by which the state will address mobility challenges, increase access to electric vehicles and charging stations, and create good paying jobs.
Judge Denies EPA Appeal in Flint Water Case
After ruling in 2020 that Flint residents could sue the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for negligence in the Flint Water Crisis, U.S. District Judge Judith Levy denied an EPA appeal that would have taken the case to a higher court. While the State of Michigan agreed to a $626 million settlement last year, the ruling maintains the ability for Flint residents to sue the EPA for not aggressively intervening after lead was detected in drinking water in 2014.
Join Michigan LCV for our 2022 Annual Gala!
Join the Michigan LCV team at the Gem Theatre in Detroit on Thursday, September 29 for our 10th annual gala as we recognize and celebrate the people making real change to protect Michigan’s land, air, water, public health, and democracy.
This year, the Michigan LCV team will be honoring two outstanding individuals and two incredible partner organizations for their work to move the needle on issues facing our land, air, water, public health and democracy in Michigan.
Our 2022 Gala awardees are Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, MLive reporter Garret Ellison, the Michigan Advisory Council on Environmental Justice, and Planet Detroit.
You can purchase tickets here. We hope you will join us!
Help Us Reach a Conservation Majority in Michigan!
Michigan LCV needs you to help us achieve a conservation majority in the Michigan Legislature. Join us at one of our next canvasses!
Canvass for Padma Kuppa for State Senate and Sharon MacDonell for State Representative
Sept. 28 from 3 – 5 pm
Stay tuned for future volunteer opportunities in your area!