Officials unsure whether Flint water linked to Legionnaires

Meanwhile, Michigan officials say they still aren't certain whether there's a link between a drinking water crisis in Flint and an increase in local cases of Legionnaires' disease.

"There's too little here to tell", Mr. Walling said.

Also Wednesday, Snyder asked President Barack Obama to reconsider the denial of a federal disaster declaration to address the crisis, saying it poses an "imminent and long-term threat" to residents.

Making his first public remarks on the water fiasco, Obama admitted that he would be devastated if he were living in Flint and his own children were poisoned by the drinking water. Even after that, however, it took months before the state, with the Department of Environmental Quality having primary responsibility over Flint's water, acknowledged mistakes in not requiring corrosion controls as required which could have stopped lead from leaching into the water supply from old service lines throughout the city.

Another group of volunteers have recently formed a Facebook page titled "Madison to Flint Water Crisis". "When we see people fear drinking water; we see this in third-world countries, we don't see this in the United States".

And it was the emergency manager appointed under that new law in 2013 who made the bad call in Flint that led to the lead poisoning of its water supply (the issue was brought to light by Curt Guyette, an investigative journalist working for the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan).

"If we're low on water, I can't make soup", Mays says. Residents were encouraged to boil their water.

No, because the former mayor told us the water was good, he drinks it every day, so there's nothing I need to discuss with him about this.

All five family members began to lose their hair and developed painful rashes on their arms and face. They didn't learn the water was tainted until the state issued warnings a year and a half later.

Governor Snyder is expected to be among those invited to testify, according to the office of Representative Brenda Lawrence (D-Michigan), who sits on the committee but whose district does not cover Flint.

"As Gov. Snyder said in his State of the State Address earlier this week, government at all levels failed the people of Flint".

The president's actions authorize the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to coordinate responses and cover 75% of the costs for much-needed water, filters, filter cartridges and other items for residents, capped initially at $5 million.

Flint, a financially strapped city north of Detroit, switched water supplies in 2014 to save money. The pipes began leeching lead. Although the state helped Flint switch back to Detroit water in October, danger remains because of damage the Flint River water did to the water distribution system. The water crisis may well result in a burden for the city's schools as well as its health system.

Still, Demas said she made her decision "with a heavy heart" and apologized to those hurt by Ballenger's comments "at a time of already considerable anxiety and pain".

The health implications for Flint residents are enormous. That came as long ago as February 2015, when a homeowner in Flint contacted local, state and federal EPA officials about high lead-levels at her home - levels an EPA manager confirmed for himself not long after, though state officials continued to insist the water was safe. "So imagine what this has done to an entire population".

Nearly immediately, residents noticed changes in the smell, color and taste of their tap water. (Yes, I know, he still has credibility with the plutocrats who helped put him and the legislators in office.) If this were a city in Japan, the responsible officials would have resigned honorably by now. And like many issues of inequity in MI and nationwide, there's a racial component - it's been invoked primarily in the state's poorest and blackest cities.

Despite the widespread attention and public outcry the disaster in Flint has prompted in recent weeks, Pineo doesn't think the situation has improved.

Previously, the city used Lake Huron water treated by the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department.

"Our voices are not as heard as they would be in a more affluent area", a resident told RT.

Iran's top diplomat decries US 'coercion'
He said the nuclear sanctions that the U.S. called "crippling" were anything but, and that it better be careful about imposing new sanctions.