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Irrigation districts sue state over water diverted to Kansas

Irrigation districts sue state over water diverted to Kansas

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CAMBRIDGE, Neb. — Nebraska's legal feuding with Kansas over the Republican River may be over for now, but trouble continues to brew in the basin.

Two irrigation districts whose farmers draw water from the river to irrigate cropland are seeking damages from the state for lost irrigation water in 2013 and 2014.

The Nebraska Department of Natural Resources ordered that water bypass the Frenchman Cambridge and Bostwick Irrigation Districts' storage reservoirs and diversion dams during those two years.

The districts have filed lawsuits saying the water was sent to Kansas at the expense of their members' crops to help Nebraska comply with an interstate compact governing the river.

The Frenchman Cambridge district also is suing the Department of Natural Resources and three Republican River natural resources districts challenging plans they say would permit increased groundwater pumping in the basin. Omaha attorney David Domina represents the Frenchman Cambridge district.

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