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Thursday, January 21, 2010 - 11:24am

Court Ruling Helps Water Negotiations

Georgia slightly improved its negotiating power in its two decade old water dispute with neighboring states.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied a motion by Florida and Alabama to dismiss a Georgia appeal of a judges ruling.

Last summer, a federal judge ruled that Georgia has no rights to water from Lake Lanier. He gave a deadline of three years for Georgia to find a sharing agreement with Florida and Alabama.

The deadline weakened Georgia's position in water negotiations.

Governor Sonny Perdue's spokesman, Bert Brantley says, the decision is good news for the state.

"It helps our position and encourages them even more to get to the table and come to a long term solution than if it were dismissed," says Brantley.

Negotiators for all three states have been meeting weekly.

Brantley says, there is hope that an agreement will come soon.

You can view the ruling here.