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Thursday, September 22, 2011 - 11:35am

State Wants Water Claims Dismissed

The state is asking a federal judge to dismiss part of Alabama’s lawsuit over Lake Allatoona.

Georgia’s lawyers argue an appeals court decision over Lake Lanier earlier this week renders the Allatoona claims obsolete.

Alabama claims the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is mismanaging both reservoirs— Lake Allatoona and Lanier.

However, the 11th Circuit’s ruling on Lanier concludes Alabama can only contest the Corps’ final decisions on how the reservoirs are operated.

The Corps has been managing flows on a temporary plan for decades due to the lawsuit.

Lawyer Todd Silliman represents Georgia in the cases.

"The Corps has not been able to make a final decision about how they can operate those reservoirs," says Silliman. "It’s just making interim decisions until the litigation gets resolved, so they haven’t made any final decisions that can be reviewed by a court."

Silliman says applying the Lanier ruling to the Allatooona suit nullifies most of Alabama’s claims. Alabama has a month to respond to the motion.

Silliman adds that the state will eventually ask for a dismissal of the single remaining claim in the case over Hickory Log Creek Reservoir but on other grounds.

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