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As coronavirus concern grows, state to restore water service to thousands of Detroit residents

hands under pouring water
mrjn Photography

Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced Monday that the state will pick up the cost for Detroit residents to have water service re-connected for the duration of the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. Approximately 3,000 households in the city may be without water service for non-payment.

There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state, but Whitmer said the virus is spreading so quickly, it’s just a matter of time.

“I think today’s announcement will go a long way toward ensuring that people have access to water, especially during this health crisis, and we will be, you know, a good partner in that,” she said.

Whitmer said the state will pick up the tab for the first 30 days of service once a household’s water is re-connected. After that, the monthly bill will be $25 for the duration of the crisis.

The governor said the action was required to ensure people have access to water for bathing and hand-washing.

“So we are moving quickly, thoughtfully, and making sure that we make decisions that are based on facts and science and the law,” she said.

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Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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