LANSING — Michigan Democratic Party Chair Brandon Dillon is calling for the resignation or firing of State Treasurer Nick Khouri after uncovering documents that he says locked the City of Flint into taking water from the Flint River.
Dillon said the document in question, obtained from the Treasury Department via the Freedom of Information Act, granted the City a $7 million emergency loan and returned it to democratic control — but the deal also restricted the City from switching Flint’s water supply until the completion of a pipeline to Lake Huron, which was not expected to be complete for at least another year. The deal was signed last April, months after issues with the water started coming to light.
“The agreement was signed six months after GM stopped using Flint’s water due to the corrosion it caused metal car parts, but the Snyder administration still determined it was good enough for Flint families and children to drink,” Dillon said.
Dillon added that the document stipulates that entering an agreement with any other water provider would require the written approval of the State Treasurer.
Khouri responded to Dillon’s announcement in a statement.
“At no time did the loan agreement with Flint prohibit the city from returning to the Detroit Water System,” Khouri said. “It required the City only to notify, and receive State approval, before making such a decision.”
Khouri added that the State did not receive any requests from the City to move back to the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department service between the day the agreement was signed and October of 2015, when the City reconnected to DWSD with State financial assistance.