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Wednesday, July 22, 2009 - 9:51am

Perdue: Appeal Will Focus on Three Flaws With Federal Water Ruling

Governor Sonny Perdue says his legal team is drafting an appeal to a federal judge's ruling that threatens Atlanta's water supply.

Following a meeting with political and business officials about the water dispute, Perdue told members of the press that the state's lawyers have found three legal vulnerabilities with the order, but he wouldn't give further details.

He also said Georgia would not revert to so-called "draconian" measures of water release from the Lake Lanier reservoir. In addition to a legal appeal, Perdue plans to eventually negotiate with the governors of Alabama and Florida.

Senator Johnny Isakson says the states need a catalyst to start the negotiations.

"Well hopefully one of the governors or one of the groups, I’m not going to put it on anyone’s shoulders, but somebody says hey look, we need to sit down and make an agreement. Then hopefully we can appeal to a higher calling and that higher calling will get everyone to put aside past differences."

Georgia's congressional delegation met in Washington Tuesday night to discuss what to do after a federal judge ruled the state had no water rights to Lake Lanier and have 3 years to get congressional approval in order to keep using it.

Isakson says before any congressional action can be taken, his office is researching to see if situations like this exist elsewhere in the country or if Georgia would set a precedent.


Valarie Edwards