FLINT, MI — Today begins another round of Mediation and Deliberations on the Proposed 30-year Contract With Detroit Water. The Honorable Flint Mayor Karen Weaver and the Flint City Council will be in legal closed session working towards a mediated to resolution. The Community speakers at a Nov. 15, 2017 Flint City Council meeting were all opposed last night. The council armed with now full disclosure is working hard, digging in. We are confident that when the council renders their decision we will know why.
Mayor Weaver appears to have grown from one council vote she can depend on to three with six other she can negotiate with.Great! Everyone appears to be working hard on the issue of Flint’s future water source. All have their best foot forward. I hope that this new found civility is not a lone footprint but a path. I am optimistic. My optimism is based on the process of governance between the council and mayor having the appearance of working.
Flint Citizens of which I am one, are skeptical of our local government and untrusting. To us, actions speak louder than words. I value process over individuals elected to any office. Some share my position. We value the greater good over individual benefit, transparency over illegal backroom deals, Accountability demanding ethical behavior, financial disclosure, and sanctions for violation of law. We value the legal foundations of the local governance process over the people in office. An example if our desire for full implementation of the new Flint City Charter on 1/1/18.
I challenge all Flint Citizens to watch this process closely and let your opinion be known.
Realistically our City Government’s newfound cooperation may help get the 800 lb gorilla out of the room. It being the RTAB and the control the state still has over us. I observe that if Snyder does not get what he wants he can exert his influence through RTAB and execute the originally proposed contract.
It may not matter what our new found civility concludes. RTAB may well call the shots.
This is but a policy battle. There will be more to come.
The WAR for Flints Renewed Home Rule Continues.
(Terry Bankert is a former City of Flint Ombudsman and a local lawyer specializing in Family Law and Bankruptcy.)