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State leaders work to make sure water is restored to residents during COVID-19

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Posted at 1:06 PM, May 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-08 13:06:23-04

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan leaders are encouraging those without water service due to nonpayment to reach out to local water departments for reconnection.

The state says all occupied homes without water are entitled to have service reconnected by local water departments under Governor Gretchen Whitmer's executive order 2020-28.

“Running water is essential to protecting families from COVID-19 transmission, and we want to make sure all Michigan residents have access during this health emergency,” said Governor Whitmer. “For those who’ve not yet been reconnected, there is help available both at the local and state levels to get the tap turned on.”

The state said no upfront payment is required for reconnection as all occupied residences where nonpayment was the reason for disconnection are required to be connected under the executive order.

The state said residents are not required to provide a copy of their deed or lease agreement in order to have water restored during the COVID-19 emergency. Although water bills will continue to accrue during the emergency, residents can work with local water departments to arrange for payment once the emergency has ended, the state said.

The state said residents should take the following steps to reconnect water:

• Contact your local water department and tell them you are eligible for reconnection under the governor’s executive order. If you are unsure how to reach your water department, contact your local city, village or township offices to find out. Detroiters can call the city’s reconnection hotline at 313-386-9727.
• If you are unable to reach your water provider or they are unwilling or unable to restore service, you may obtain assistance from the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) at 1-800-662-9278. EGLE Clean Water Public Advocate Ninah Sasy monitors every request for assistance. She will work with local suppliers to resolve the concern and will elevate issues directly to the office of Governor Whitmer as necessary.
• Once your service is reconnected, it is important to properly flush the pipes to clear stagnant water that may have collected contaminants. Guidance on flushing is available inhere. A video on how to properly flush systems can be found here.

If you are experiencing issues with getting your water restored, call EGLE at 1-800-662-9278.

Information on managing utility bills can be found here.

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