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sheldon neeley

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

This week, voters across Michigan go to the polls to cast ballots in a variety of local elections.

Incumbent mayors in Warren, Jackson and Flint are facing primary challenges on Tuesday.

In Flint, Mayor Karen Weaver is running for re-election after a term that has seen her city plunged into the national spotlight because of the city’s water crisis and the city’s slow recovery.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

A judge has decided to ignore mistakes made by some of the four Flint mayoral candidates and allow all of them to appear on the August primary ballot.

The candidates filed legal briefs last week defending each of their positions to be on the ballot, while also raising questions about their opponents. The conflicting legal claims opened the possibility that one or all four candidates would be dropped from the ballot, forcing them to run write-in campaigns.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Monday morning, a circuit court judge will hear a case that could force all the candidates running for Flint mayor off the August primary ballot.

It appears all four candidates who qualified for a spot on the primary ballot made mistakes in their paperwork filed with the city clerk. One of the candidates even checked “no” on the question asking whether candidates met the qualifications to be a candidate for mayor. 

The judge may decide if the mistakes disqualify one or all the candidates.

Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel is bringing in a different prosecutor to evaluate how the Flint water crisis investigation is going.

Nessel has asked Wayne County prosecutor Kym Worthy to do “an independent evaluation of the Flint Water criminal cases.”

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Two state lawmakers are asking Michigan’s attorney general to intervene in the decision to end bottled water distribution in Flint.

Governor Snyder speaking at a Flint water press conference on January 27, 2016.
SnyderLive

President Obama's visit this week puts the national spotlight back on Flint and its water crisis. 

It has been four months since Governor Snyder declared a state of emergency in Flint. There were promises to fix the many problems Flint now faces because of its water. But a bill that would send the city $144 million to help fix the city's problems is still stuck in the state Legislature. 

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Flint State Representative Sheldon Neeley would like to hear Governor Snyder commit to spend part of a budget surplus to address Flint’s water crisis during his State of the State address. 

Last week, state budget officials estimated Michigan will have a $575 million, one-time revenue surplus this year.

Neeley knows where he would like the money to be used: Flint’s water emergency.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Updated 5:30 p.m. 

Flint has a new ally in its push for federal funds to fix the city’s water problems.

Michigan’s legislative black caucus is urging Gov. Rick Snyder to issue a state of emergency to address the continuing health concerns caused by the dangerous lead levels in Flint’s water.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The head of Michigan's Department of Environmental Quality plans to respond Monday to a demand for answers about Flint’s water woes.

Last week, State Sen. Jim Ananich, D-Flint, state Rep. Sheldon Neeley, D-Flint, and state Rep. Phil Phelps, D-Flushing, sent a letter to DEQ director Dan Wyant demanding answers to a list of questions about the safety and treatment of Flint’s drinking water.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The Flint City Council may soon try to push out the city’s emergency manager.

Flint has been under the control of an emergency manager appointed by the governor since 2011. Three men have served as Flint’s emergency manager.  Darnell Earley was appointed to the job a year ago. His 18-month appointment ends next Spring. 

But that’s not soon enough for City Councilman Sheldon Neeley.

“Democracy needs to be restored, today, right now,” says Neeley.

Neeley says the current emergency manager law gives the city council the power it needs to remove Earley.

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Next year, the city of Flint will charge residents higher fees in exchange for less service.

The budget plan unveiled last night was greeted with anger from city residents and city council members.

The budget plan calls for trimming 20 percent of city government workers from the payroll.   Flint police officers and firefighters are not being spared.   The emergency manager didn't include public safety officers in the budget whose positions are funded with grant money that hasn't been secured yet.