Flint, MI— The City of Flint, McLaren Regional Medical Center and Rowe Professional Services have now signed onto the $600 million water crisis settlement, which increased financial compensation for Flint residents from $600 million to $641.2 million. The settlement was presented to the Court on Nov. 17 for preliminary approval.
The City of Flint has conditionally agreed to contribute $20 million. The money will be offered through its insurance provider instead of funds generated by taxpayer dollars.
However, Flint City Council has yet to approve the contribution. Twice, council members have voted not to go into closed executive sessions to discuss the settlement.
Additionally, a Council meeting that was scheduled to take place Nov. 18 was canceled because five council members and Flint Mayor Sheldon Neeley were absent.
McLaren Regional Medical Center is contributing $20 million and Rowe Professional Services is contributing $1.25 million.
“We are pleased that we are able to take another step towards providing the Flint community and residents a measure of justice. While this can never undo the damage that has been done, it is essential that those who are responsible for the reckless behavior that led to this crisis are held accountable,” said Ted Leopold, court-appointed co-lead counsel and Partner at Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll.
The State of Michigan, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and all defendants, including former Governor Rick Snyder, are now parties to the settlement.
Judge Judith Levy of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan will review the submitted Master Settlement and either approve or deny the Motion for Preliminary Approval.
If approved, Flint residents will have 90 days to register for their settlement funds. Thereafter, those who have registered will have 120 days to file documents to support their claims.
Monetary awards will not be issued until after the settlement receives final approval following a public hearing by Judge Levy.
The terms of the settlement are detailed in a 71-page agreement which can be viewed online here. Flint residents can review the criteria and documents necessary for filing a clam.
Eighteen percent of the settlement funds will go to adults and property damage, 79.5% to children, 2% to special education services in Genesee County, and 0.5% for business and economic loss.
“This settlement agreement is just one of the many ways we will continue showing our support for the city and residents of Flint,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
Further litigation continues against the United States Environmental Protection Agency as well as the city’s former engineering consultants — Lockwood, Andrews, and Newnam, Inc., and Veolia North America, Inc.
“While no amount of money will heal the wounds inflicted on this community, we are glad to see more entities step up and take responsibility,” Neeley said. “The residents of the City of Flint deserve justice and they deserve a resolution to these lawsuits.”
Flint residents can stay up date on settlement information by visiting FlintSettlementFacts.org