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Lincoln Journal Star Features Dave Domina in Coverage of Republican River Case

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Dave Domina was recently featured in an article published in the Lincoln Journal Star on the lawsuit farmers are filing against the state over 2013 crop losses.

"These surface water litigators, we contend, have a superior right under the state Constitution to that water, and under federal reclamation law, over the use of the water to satisfy the contract." – Dave Domina.

A class of Nebraska farmers are filing a lawsuit against the state over 2013 crop losses. The plaintiffs, represented by Domina Law Group, claim that the state should compensate them for the losses caused by water diverted to Kansas per the Republican River Compact.

The Republican River Compact, signed in 1943, required 49 percent of the river's water to go to Nebraska, 40 percent to Kansas, and 11 percent to Colorado. The lawsuit filed in Furnas County District Court does not contend that 40 percent of the river's water should not have been siphoned off to Kansas, but rather contends that the state of Nebraska is required to compensate farmers for crops lost as a result.

According to Mr. Domina, total losses have yet to be tallied, but he estimates it will number in the tens of millions. One Nebraska farmer alone, James Uerling, cites over $240,000 in losses between 2013 and 2014. Uerling and three other farmers are the class members in this suit. They are all farmers in the Frenchman Cambridge Irrigation District. The four plaintiffs in this class represent more than 150 producers all seeking payment for damages to crops.

The plaintiffs also continue to pay irrigated land tax even though the land is dry – dryland is taxed at a much lower rate than irrigated land.

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