City Council Wants To Disband BWL Board

LANSING, MI (WLNS) – Another change may be on the horizon for Lansing’s Board of Water and Light.

“We need to have the board understand accountability.”

That’s why councilwoman A’Lynne Boles announced a resolution to dissolve the BWL Board of Commissioners. Her plan would create a new board that would only be advisory in nature and would answer to the city council.

After a year the board’s advisory status could change.

“I was surprised.”

The Board of Commissioners Chair David Price was caught by surprise. He knew nothing of the resolution before Thursday’s meeting.

He says the move is too extreme for a first step.

“If we’re looking at a time when we need to restructure the board then certainly that should be on the table, but I think it needs to be at the end of the conversation, not necessarily at the beginning of the conversation,” said David Price, BWL Board of Commissioners, chair.

The resolution could also meet resistance from the city attorney’s office, since Lansing’s charter limits some of these actions.

Right now it is unclear if the resolution would require a charter amendment.

But councilwoman Boles says this is not the end of the discussion and in the future a plan to make BWL a city department, could be possible.

“It may be the end all answer, but we have not done the due diligence yet, and I think the mayor would also admit to that, that we’re at the beginning of a process, we’ve got a long way to go. But we’ve got to get moving quickly because we cannot continue to function in a dysfunctional manner,” said A’Lynne Boles, Lansing City Council.

The next step is to see if the council can legally disband the Board of Commissioners.

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