Yesterday, you may have caught a segment on MSNBC where Maureen Taylor, state chairwoman of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, blasted WDIV reporter Hank Winchester for comments he made about the ongoing water shutoffs in Detroit. The segment highlighted some of the city’s commercial accounts with substantial outstanding fees, something also reported in an NBC nightly news broadcast over the weekend. We also touched on it again in this week’s Metro Times. For months, the Detroit Water & Sewerage Department has indicated all accounts would be treated the same in its shutoff initiative: If a residential customer owes $150, or, in the case of commercial accounts, happen to be 60 days past-due, a notice would be sent saying to pay the fees within 10 days, or their water would be shutoff. But, as we reported this week, it’s more complicated than that. And the reason that 6o-day threshold has misled some appears to be tied to DWSD’s communications with the public and press since shutoff efforts commenced in March. In actuality, Ford Field, VA Hospital, city-owned golf courses and more, may be in dispute over stormwater drainage fees — an entirely different scenario than residential water use, as one DWSD spokesperson explained this week. Thing is, the department hadn’t phrased the situation as […]
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