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Judge puts an end to New Mexico's 1966 water-rights lawsuit

Jul 17, 2017

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — After more than 50 years of litigation, a federal judge has brought an end to a water-rights lawsuit involving four Native American communities and various residents in northern New Mexico. The lawsuit, known as the Aamodt Case, began in 1966. U.S. District Judge William P. Johnson's decree on Friday puts an end to it, unless someone appeals — again. Johnson affirmed a 2010 settlement calling for a regional water system in the Pojoaque Basin. The settlement also puts rules in place for well owners to either tie into the system or continue using their wells. The federal government has set a 2024 deadline for substantial completion of the $260 million regional water system, which will divert from the Rio Grande. It will be paid for with federal funds and about $72 million in state funds.