Board votes to file appeal on preferential rights judgment

February 28, 2002

The San Diego County Water Authority board of directors voted to appeal the trial court's dismissal of the lawsuit against…

The San Diego County Water Authority board of directors voted to appeal the trial court’s dismissal of the lawsuit against the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California to determine preferential rights to Metropolitan’s water. The appeal is in response to San Francisco Superior Court Judge James J. McBride’s judgment sustaining a demurrer filed by MWD against the Authority.

“Filing this appeal will bring us one step closer to clarifying the formula by which Metropolitan calculates its member agencies’ rights to water,” said Water Authority board chair James F.Turner. “A more objective approach to allocating water would protect the Water Authority against being charged for water it doesn’t receive. In fact, during oral argument, the judge commented that regardless of his decision, this issue was likely to be appealed by one of the parties to the lawsuit.” “Â

Under the current formula used by Metropolitan the Water Authority has a preferential right to less than 15 percent of Met’s water, but has paid nearly a quarter of its total revenue.

“Appeal of the Water Authority’s court case will benefit all of Southern California in that all of Metropolitan’s member agencies need to know what water they can count on receiving,” said Turner.

“ÂThe San Diego County Water Authority is a public agency serving the San Diego region as a wholesale supplier of water from Northern California and the Colorado River. The Water Authority works through its 23 member agencies to provide a safe, reliable water supply to almost three million county residents.

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  • The San Diego County Water Authority sustains a $268 billion regional economy and the quality of life for 3.3 million residents through a multi-decade water supply diversification plan, major infrastructure investments and forward-thinking policies that promote fiscal and environmental responsibility. A public agency created in 1944, the Water Authority delivers wholesale water supplies to 23 retail water providers, including cities, special districts and a military base.

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