LANSING — Earlier this week, the House Appropriations Committee defeated on party lines an amendment offered by state Rep. Pam Faris (D-Clio) to amend the budget to appropriate funds generated through House Bill 5656, sponsored by state Rep. Yousef Rabhi (D-Ann Arbor), which imposes a wholesale excise tax of four percent on corporations producing bottled groundwater in the state. The amendment would have provided funding for bottled water distribution in Flint using the funds generated from HB 5656. In response, Rep. Rabhi issued the following statement:

            “Water is our most precious resource, yet ironically it is perhaps most threatened in the Great Lakes State. Just this month, the Snyder administration decided to allow a foreign corporation to increase its pumping operations and take our groundwater to bottle and sell for only $200 a year. Days later, the state decided to stop providing bottled water to Flint residents, whose tap water was tainted with lead due to the Snyder administration’s recklessness and mismanagement. I am disappointed my Republican colleagues did not agree to provide Flint the support they need or to ensure corporations are unable to exploit our most precious natural resource. However, I will continue working with my Democratic colleagues to hold these corporations accountable and provide the people of Flint the support and justice they deserve.”