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Fri April 4, 2008
Wyoming asks Supreme Court to throw out water lawsuit
Billings, Mont. – Wyoming's Attorney General is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to dismiss a lawsuit alleging the state's agriculture and energy industries are using too much water in violation of an interstate agreement.
Montana sued its southern neighbor last year, claiming farmers and other water users along the Powder and Tongue rivers were being harmed.
The two rivers flow from northern Wyoming into southern Montana before draining into the Yellowstone River.
The dispute between the states centers on the Yellowstone River Compact. That 1950 agreement allocated each state a share of water from the Yellowstone and its tributaries.
In court documents filed Friday asking justices to dismiss the suit, Wyoming argued its water use was within its rights and that Montana's interpretation of the compact was "fundamentally flawed."