Governor Sonny Perdue says the state will appeal a federal ruling against Georgia in a regional water dispute with Florida and Alabama.
Atlanta relies on water from Lake Lanier and has been drawing it for decades with an agreement from the Army Corps of Engineers, but U.S. district Judge Paul Magnuson ordered yesterday it's not up to the Corps, but Congress to grant the water's release. Judge Magnuson cited the Water Supply Act of 1958 and ordered the city get approval from Congress in the next three years.
The ruling upset Georgia officials. U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson said, "The ruling, I'm sure, is disappointing to everybody who's been in the middle of this 19 year jostle between the states but it now clearly puts the responsibility on the shoulders of Congress."
Governor Perdue will meet with Senator Isakson next week. Perdue argues the ruling is based on outdated assumptions about federal reservoirs and he wants Congress to address the realities of modern day usage.
Contributors: John Sepulvado (GPB), Charles Edwards (WABE)