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California Water Ban Paused Due to Harm to Minority Community

Sept. 7, 2021, 8:33 PM

Siskiyou County, Calif., can’t enforce two ordinances aimed at curbing illegal marijuana cultivation that effectively cut off the water supply to a minority community, a federal court in the state ruled.

The ordinances have “exacted a heavy and disproportionate toll on the Shasta Vista Hmong community,” according to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California.

The ordinances at issue ban groundwater use and transportation without proof of legal use. This has shifted the burden of proving legal use from the county to water suppliers, users, and transporters, the court said Sept. 3.

As a result, the Hmong ...

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