Justices ask Obama administration to weigh in on Georgia-Florida ‘water wars’

The U.S. Supreme Court asked the Obama administration to weigh in on the “water wars” dispute between Georgia and Florida that prompted a lawsuit in the high court last year.

Florida sued Georgia, claiming that its northern neighbor was taking too much water from the Chattahoochee River to support development and farmland, starving the oyster bays in the Panhandle. After getting briefs from both states, the Supreme Court on Monday asked the Solicitor General’s Office to weigh in. The solicitor general represents the U.S. government in cases before the high court.

The Army Corps of Engineers is working on new water manuals to allocate flows in the water basin.

“The Supreme Court’s decision to look carefully into this matter before granting Florida’s motion is good news for Georgians, as I am hopeful that Solicitor General (Donald) Verrilli will agree that at a minimum the water control manuals be updated first,” Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal said in a statement. “Florida’s decision to take this aggressive action in the Supreme Court is premature at best, and we welcome the opinion of Solicitor General Verrilli going forward.”

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