AP NEWS

State’s longest-running water rights case is over

May 9, 2019

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — The longest-running water rights court case in the state of Washington has come to an end.

Yakima County Superior Judge F. James Gavin signed a final decree in the case on Thursday.

The Yakima Herald-Republic says the decree confirms all surface water rights for the Yakima Basin and its tributaries, ending almost 42 years of litigation.

About 50 people in the courtroom applauded.

The case was originally filed in 1977, when James Acquavella sought assurances from the state that he would have enough water to irrigate five acres.

Elements of the lengthy case went to the state Supreme Court four times.

The final decree sets up priority dates for water rights in the Yakima Basin. The priority date determines who gets water when there isn’t enough to go around.

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Information from: Yakima Herald-Republic, http://www.yakimaherald.com