Category Archives: Water Law

January 12, 2017 Weekly Round Up

It was a busy week around here as I traveled to Nashville to speak at the American Farm Bureau Federation Conference.  It was my first time to be on the same agenda as the President, so that was quite exciting!  To those of you joining from that conference, welcome to the blog!  Here are some of the ag law stories in the news this week.   * US Supreme Court will not hear Endangered Species Act case involving Utah prairie dog.  You may remember a case in Utah where… Read More →

January 5, 2018 Weekly Round Up

Hello and Happy New Year!  I hope everyone enjoyed a wonderful holiday.  We’re back in the saddle and here are some of the top ag law stories in the news this first week of 2018. *US Supreme Court gears up for oral argument in Texas v. New Mexico.  On Monday, Justices will hear oral arguments at the US Supreme Court in the water law case Texas v. New Mexico.  This case involves a 1938 Rio Grande Compact that requires New Mexico to deliver water at the Elephant Butte Reservoir… Read More →

December 15, 2017 Weekly Round Up

Happy Friday!  The last couple of weeks I made trips to Tulia and Miami for county extension programs, so welcome to those of you joining the blog.  Here are some of the ag law stories in the news this week. *KUT writes interesting article on wind right severances.  Mose Buchele wrote an interesting article on a new issue of Texas landowners selling property but reserving wind rights.  This is a new phenomenon, which raises interesting legal and practical questions.  [Read article here.] *TCEQ will not appoint watermaster for San Saba… Read More →

Court Sides with New Mexico Cattle Ranchers in Water Dispute

A federal court has sided with a group of New Mexico ranchers in a case involving a dispute over stock watering rights in the Lincoln National Forest. Background The US Forest Service (USFS) manages federally owned land within the Lincoln National Forest in New Mexico.  As part of that management, since 1910, the USFS has issued grazing permits to ranchers to graze cattle on the federally owned forest land.  Each year the USFS determines the number of cattle that may be grazed on various portions of the forest,… Read More →

December 8, 2017 Weekly Round Up

Hello and welcome to another Friday!  Here are some of the ag law stories in the news this week.  For those of you in the Panhandle, my last program of 2017 will be this Tuesday in Miami talking transition planning and agricultural leases.  Seating is limited, so if you are interested, RSVP to Michael at (806) 868-3191. * Colorado moves to dismiss lawsuit seeking rights for Colorado River, seeks sanctions against Plaintiffs’ attorney.  You may recall from this prior blog post that an environmental group filed suit in Colorado… Read More →

9th Circuit: Federal Reserved Water Rights Applies to Groundwater

A landmark water ruling came out of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit earlier this year.  This decision–that federal reserved water rights include groundwater–could have significant impacts on groundwater across the country, and in particular in the West. Background In the late 1800’s the federal government established a reservation (“the Reservation”) in California for the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians (“the Tribe”).  The Executive Orders creating the Reservation state that the purpose was for lands be set aside “as reservations for the permanent use and… Read More →

Parties Settle Red River Dispute

In November, a settlement was reached in an ongoing dispute between the federal Bureau of Land Management (“BLM”) and Texas landowners who own land along the Red River, which separates Texas and Oklahoma.  Under the settlement, the parties agree on how the southern boundary of the Red River is to be determined going forward–based on the gradient boundary line, but the current gradient boundary was not specifically identified.   Factual Background This case involves a heated dispute between the BLM and Texas landowners with property along the Red… Read More →

November 24, 2017 Weekly Round Up

Hope you all enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.  Here are some ag law stories in the news this week that might be good fodder for discussions with the visiting relatives (or not.) *EPA proposes 2-year delay of 2015 WOTUS rule.  The EPA and Corps of Engineers have proposed a rule that would delay implementation of the 2015 WOTUS rule for two years.  Currently, the 2015 rule is stayed by the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and the EPA is currently working through the required process… Read More →

November 3, 2017 Weekly Round Up

Welcome to November!  I hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable Halloween.  Our family celebrated with a tractor and an elephant, both of whom received lots of candy!   Here are some of the ag law stories in the news this week. *John Deere wins trademark infringement claim.  Speaking of tractors, Deere & Co. recently won a trademark infringement case in Kentucky federal court.  Deere filed suit against FIMCO (Ag Spray Equipment), a company who manufactures and sells sprayers painted, you guessed it, green and yellow.  Deere has… Read More →

October 13, 2017 Weekly Round Up

Hello from Dallas Love Field Airport, which has been my second home recently with all my travels.  This week, I made my way to Stephenville to speak at Annie’s Project.  Huge kudos to Jason Johnson for his work coordinating this intensive educational course for farm and ranch women and a big thanks to him for inviting me to participate.  It is always one of my favorite programs of the year. Here are some ag law stories in the news this week. * Iowa “Ag Gag” statute challenged in… Read More →