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Fairness hearing begins Monday for Flint water settlement

Flint Water
Posted at 9:54 AM, Jul 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-12 09:54:41-04

FLINT, Mich. — The hearing to determine whether the state’s $600 million Flint water civil settlement will be officially approved begins Monday in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.

Back in January, Judge Judith Levy gave preliminary approval to the settlement, establishing the process through which Flint residents could indicate their intention to file eligible settlement claims that will be processed and paid by the claims administrator.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in August announced state’s portion of the preliminary agreement to settle the lawsuits filed against the state after Flint switched its public water supply to the Flint River in 2014.

Defendants that ultimately joined the settlement include the City of Flint, McLaren Regional Medical Center and Rowe Professional Services.

The fairness hearing began at 10 a.m. Monday and is scheduled to take three days, with no court scheduled Wednesday.

During the hearing, Judge Levy will listen to arguments and objections to determine whether the settlement is fair, adequate and reasonable.

A final ruling is expected to be entered later this summer.

Those who wish to monitor the hearing can request virtual courtroom access here.

If the settlement gets approved and funds are distributed to claimants, the state will have contributed more than $1 billion to Flint’s relief and recovery efforts.

Past contributions include a settlement agreement where $97 million was made available to replace all of the city’s lead service lines in its water system.

To date, Michigan has spent almost $423 million in response to the Flint water emergency.

READ MORE: Judge preliminarily approves proposed $641 million Flint water lawsuit settlement

READ MORE: Timeline: View the major events of the Flint water crisis