Lansing Township Suing BWL Over Drainage System - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Lansing Township Suing BWL Over Drainage System

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LANSING TWP., MI (WLNS) - Lansing Township is suing the Board of Water and Light over the cost of a new drainage system.

That system, in the north Lansing landfill cost $12 million.

6 News Joe Khalil has more.

The 6-year old drainage system had to be built because contamination from BWL’s operation years ago, in the landfill was getting into the groundwater.

The township says BWL caused the pollution so BWL should pay it.

But last night we heard from the County Drain Commissioner who says he thinks the only reason they're suing BWL is because the township is financially stressed and can't afford the fix.

We brought that issue back to township officials for a response. Ingham County Drain Commissioner

Patrick Lindemann admits BWL is responsible for fly ash, a hazardous material contaminating Lansing Township's water.

But he says the township itself contributed to the problem from new developments and even though BWL built what they call a “slurry wall” to fix the problem Lindemann says the township should pay its share.

"Lansing township has fallen on hard times financially--and they're having a hard time paying that bill--doesn't mean they don't still owe it,” said Patrick Lindemann, Ingham County Drain Commissioner.

He says that's why the township is suing BWL, hoping to win the funding in court. But township officials maintain that's simply not true.

"The township has already paid their fair share of the assessment,” said Kathleen Rodgers, supervisor, Lansing Township.

Three million dollars according to supervisor Kathleen Rodgers and she says the township’s financial situation has nothing to do with its lawsuit against BWL.

Rodgers says even if the township were to lose the lawsuit and have to pay, that money wouldn't come from their general fund, it would come from taxpayers who live in Lansing Township.

“That's why we are filing this lawsuit. This is not fair to taxpayers in Lansing Township to be paying for the contamination.”

Reporter: "This lawsuit has nothing to do with filling a hole in the township's general fund?"

Rodgers: "That’s correct"

Township officials say they have not heard back from the utility, yet.
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