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Environment & Energy Report

Texas Groundwater Takings Suit Revived by Fifth Circuit

May 29, 2020, 9:01 PM

A Texas landowner convinced the Fifth Circuit on Friday to revive his lawsuit against his local groundwater preservation district, which he says is draining his groundwater into wells for public use without adequate compensation.

The trial court was wrong to rule that the Brazos Valley Groundwater Conservation District was shielded by the Eleventh Amendment from Anthony Fazzino’s equal protection and takings clause claims, Judge Edith H. Jones said for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

The water district’s jurisdiction only covers two counties, is funded by local taxes and fees, and has autonomy to make and enforce...

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