Flint, MI–BlueTriton Brands, Inc., a Connecticut-based company that has donated bottled water to Flint residents since 2018, ended its weekly donations on Dec. 31, 2022.

According to a Jan. 13 press release from the City of Flint, BlueTriton provided 100,000 bottles of water per week since 2018, and the donations served approximately 3,000 people per week in recent months.

With BlueTriton’s donations ended, the City of Flint, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) recommend Flint residents continue using faucet filters until the city’s lead service line replacement program is complete.

That program is now set for an Aug. 1, 2023 completion date after the original 2019 deadline from a National Resources Defense Council/Concerned Pastors for Local Action settlement was pushed back several times. Most recently, the city tentatively agreed to provide weekly updates on the project’s excavation and replacement work, though Flint City Council has not yet voted on that agreement.

At his State of the City address on Dec. 12, 2022, Mayor Sheldon Neeley announced that the lead service line project was 97% complete, but the Jan. 13 press release said faucet filters are recommended until the project is completed “citywide.”

The State of Michigan previously discontinued state-funded bottled water for Flint residents on April 7, 2018, following the release of water quality data for Flint by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (now EGLE). According to the city’s press release, the state expressed confidence in the safety of the city’s filtered tap water, and the city’s water system has met state and federal standards for lead since July 2016.

Flint residents can pick up free water filter units, replacement cartridges, and water testing kits at Flint City Hall Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Residents who are unable to pick up water filters, replacement cartridges, and testing kits can request home delivery by calling the city’s Office of Public Health at 810-410-2020.

Zachary Marano is Flint Beat’s local government reporter. Zack is originally from Milford township and returns to southeast Michigan after reporting for a daily newspaper in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula....