In this file:

 

·         Judge Tosses Iowa Water Works Case

… The claim, citing the federal Clean Water Act, was dismissed for lack of standing considering the drainage districts’ limited status under Iowa law. U.S. District Court Judge Leonard Strand for the Northern District of Iowa, held that the state legislature was the proper venue to address issue…

 

·         Judge Dismisses Des Moines Lawsuit Over Nitrates in Water

A federal judge has dismissed a Des Moines water utility's lawsuit against three counties, claiming their agricultural drainage districts have been sending nitrate pollution into the rivers the water utility uses for drinking water.

 

 

Judge Tosses Iowa Water Works Case

 

By Agri-Pulse Communications

Successful Farming/Agriculture.com - 3/18/2017

 

WASHINGTON, March 18, 2017 – A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit by the Des Moines Water Works (DMWW) against three drainage districts in Northwest Iowa, prompting a huge sigh of relief from many in the agriculture sector.

 

The claim, citing the federal Clean Water Act, was dismissed for lack of standing considering the drainage districts’ limited status under Iowa law. U.S. District Court Judge Leonard Strand for the Northern District of Iowa, held that the state legislature was the proper venue to address issue.

 

“Here, DMWW asserts that it has two property rights: (1) the right to obtain clean water from the Raccoon River, and (2) the right to use its treatment plant and facilities without impairment from pollutants discharged into the Raccoon River,” Strand said. “Even if these could be considered cognizable property rights under state law, DMWW holds those rights as a public entity, making them public property rights not protected by the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause. Moreover, based on the federal law authorities cited by the Iowa Supreme Court, a public entity such as DMWW cannot assert a Fifth Amendment takings claim against another political subdivision of the state. For these reasons, DMWW has no cognizable claim....”

 

Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey said the dismissal of this lawsuit is very welcoming news...

 

more

http://www.agriculture.com/news/business/judge-tosses-iowa-water-works-case

 

 

Judge Dismisses Des Moines Lawsuit Over Nitrates in Water

A federal judge has dismissed a Des Moines water utility's lawsuit against three counties, claiming their agricultural drainage districts have been sending nitrate pollution into the rivers the water utility uses for drinking water.

 

Associated Press

via U.S. News & World Report - March 18, 2017

 

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A federal judge has dismissed a Des Moines water utility's lawsuit against three counties that accuses them of allowing agricultural drainage districts to send nitrate pollution into the rivers the water utility uses for drinking water.

 

The judge on Friday dismissed all of Des Moines Water Works' claims against drainage districts in Sac, Buena Vista and Calhoun counties, ruling that water pollution is an issue for the Iowa legislature to address.

 

The water utility alleged the three counties that oversee the drainage districts should be required to obtain federal water pollution discharge permits and pay the utility more than $1 million that it spent for increased filtration methods to remove the nitrates from water. The Iowa Supreme Court ruled in January that the utility could not force the drainage districts to reimburse the utility for the cost of cleaning excess nitrates from the water.

 

Gov. Terry Branstad, Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds and state Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey — all Republicans — lauded the federal judge's ruling, saying the lawsuit wasn't necessary to improve water quality, because farmers and government subdivisions already are taking steps to ensure water quality.

 

Utility CEO Bill Stowe said he's disappointed in the ruling and that the utility's board will review its options in the case...

 

more

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/iowa/articles/2017-03-18/judge-dismisses-des-moines-water-works-lawsuit-over-nitrates