Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Benton Harbor officers heading to Lansing | Benton Harbor

BENTON HARBOR — Benton Harbor Mayor Marcus Muhammad laid out his plans Tuesday now that metropolis commissioners declared a neighborhood state of…

By Staff , in Palladium , at October 20, 2021

BENTON HARBOR — Benton Harbor Mayor Marcus Muhammad laid out his plans Tuesday now that metropolis commissioners declared a neighborhood state of emergency within the metropolis.

In keeping with town’s constitution, Muhammad instructed the general public and media members at a information convention that in declarations of emergency, the mayor is taken into account the “presiding officer and govt head” of town.

“In instances of public hazard or emergency, he might with the consent of the fee take command of the police and such different departments and subordinates of town as deemed needed by the fee and preserve order and implement legal guidelines,” Muhammad learn from a ready assertion.

Muhammad additionally revealed metropolis officers are touring to Lansing on Thursday to talk with the state Home Oversight Committee, which meets at 10:30 a.m.

“We can be a part of the dialogue because it pertains to clear and protected consuming water within the metropolis of Benton Harbor,” he mentioned.

It was a busy day for metropolis officers, as Gov. Gretchen Whitmer met Tuesday with native leaders in Benton Harbor to reiterate her aim of changing all the metropolis’s lead service strains inside 18 months.

“She had a chance to interact with the group so she will, as said in her govt directive, make use of all assets, companies from the state of Michigan to assist resolve the water disaster within the metropolis of Benton Harbor,” Muhammad mentioned through the information convention at metropolis corridor.

The media was not notified of the governor’s personal assembly with native leaders. Whitmer’s signing of the manager directive was introduced final week by Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II when he visited town.


Benton Harbor Mayor Professional-Tem Duane Seats speaks with the media throughout a information convention Tuesday on the water disaster in Benton Harbor.

Earlier than Whitmer signed the manager directive, metropolis officers estimated it could take as much as 20 years to exchange all the lead service strains within the metropolis, as a consequence of monetary constraints.

Within the state’s not too long ago signed 2022 price range, town is receiving $10 million to assist change the lead service strains, with one other $10 million in federal funds from the American Rescue Plan being labored on. Muhammad mentioned it’s estimated to price $30 million to exchange all the metropolis’s lead service strains.

Work is anticipated to start out in November to exchange 100 lead service strains with the virtually $5.6 million obtained from the U.S Environmental Safety Company final fall.

Muhammad mentioned Tuesday that he intends to work with commissioners and state officers to assist change the lead service strains that join homes to town’s important water pipes at an accelerated fee. He mentioned he’ll “encourage and help owners in Benton Harbor to exchange lead pipes of their properties.”

Advert hoc committee

At Tuesday’s information convention, Muhammad mentioned an advert hoc group response staff (CRT) is being shaped to maintain residents knowledgeable about what’s being achieved to take away lead from town’s consuming water.

He mentioned the CRT, chaired by Benton Harbor resident Princella Tobias, will meet as soon as every week.

“We’ll be partaking the group as an entire (in a) door-to-door marketing campaign, schooling marketing campaign, the place we’re visiting senior citizen properties, public housing, residential properties and overlaying all bases … to tell residents because it pertains to the difficulty of lead, the place we’re at within the strategy of fixing the difficulty,” he mentioned. 


Princella Tobias talks concerning the want for the group to work collectively throughout a information convention held Tuesday at metropolis corridor regarding the water disaster in Benton Harbor.

After the information convention, Tobias mentioned the weekly conferences can be open to the general public, with particulars to be introduced quickly.

Benton Harbor has been beneath a state advisory for having higher-than-acceptable ranges of lead in a few of its consuming water since October 2018, when it was introduced that eight out of 30 properties sampled over the summer time had lead ranges above the motion degree of 15 components per billion (ppb), with the ninetieth percentile being at 22 ppb for lead.

Since then, town has been required to check the lead in it’s consuming water in pattern properties each six months.


Benton Harbor Mayor Marcus Muhammad holds a information convention Tuesday at metropolis corridor to replace the general public on the water disaster in Benton Harbor.

The state has been offering free water filters and substitute cartridges to residents by way of the Berrien County Well being Division for nearly three years. However final week, Michigan Division of Well being and Human Companies Director Elizabeth Hertel instructed The Herald-Palladium that they’re not sure if the filters have been adequately filtering out the lead. The state is at the moment testing the validity of the water filters.

Earlier this week, the state began offering 20 semi-trucks carrying 35,000 circumstances of free bottled water to town on a weekly foundation.

State officers have advisable residents use bottled water for consuming, brushing enamel, cooking and mixing with child formulation till the lead service strains are changed.

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