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Federal Flint case against Snyder will go forward

A federal appeals court won’t give former Governor Rick Snyder a new hearing in a class action lawsuit over the Flint water crisis. That means the lawsuit filed against Snyder and former state Treasurer Andy Dillon can go forward.

Snyder and Dillon argued to the Sixth Circuit US Court of Appeals that they were shielded by virtue of their positions from having to answer some questions in depositions. A panel of the court had already rejected the claim.

This latest request was turned down by a vote of all the judges on the appeals court, which covers most of Michigan, Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee.

“This means that they are named defendants in the lawsuit and when we go to trial, they will be a party in the courtroom, and we will be seeking a judgement against each of them for their actions or lack thereof in the Flint water crisis,” said attorney Ted Leopold, who represents a group of Flint residents who want to sue Snyder and Dillon.

“We hope by next spring or early summer – talking May, June of next year – to have our trial on the class action.”

Leopold says the class action lawsuit could include 70 to 100 thousand people seeking damages.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.