LANSING — State Representative Sheldon Neeley (D-Flint) is calling on Gov. Rick Snyder to forgive the current debt of Flint Community Schools as it looks to the future, where behavioral and developmental problems are expected to occur in children due to the effects of lead poisoning.

“The health of everyone, from newborn child to our senior citizens, was put at risk, but it is our children who will suffer the long-term effects of this catastrophe due to cognitive impairments associated with lead poisoning in young people,” Neeley said. “It is imperative that Flint Community Schools, which already struggle with financing for day-to-day operations, be given a clean slate to add programs to their schools to give the children of Flint every opportunity to succeed in spite of this crisis.”

Rep. Neeley has been on the ground floor of trying to manage this crisis in Flint, both during and now in the aftermath, as Gov. Snyder declared a State of Emergency this week for the city. With this declaration, the state will have more accessibility to resources and funding to help Flint.

“We have begun the healing process, as the state has finally focused its efforts on the people of Flint, rather than staying loyal to inept department heads and political allies,” Neeley said. “But while Gov. Snyder and his administration will be gone in a few years, the effects on Flint’s children will last a lifetime. We must do all that we can to put them first.”