Georgia is suddenly thirsty for friends in Congress

A federal judge has ruled against the state of Georgia in the tri-state water wars litigation.

But he wants a political solution and is sending the fight to Congress.

According to my AJC colleague Bill Rankin, the judge ruled that the Corps of Engineers should have sought congressional approval before allowing water from Lake Lanier to be reallocated for use by the metro Atlanta.

Read the 97-page order here.

Rankin writes:

If there is no congressional authorization by the time the end of three years is up, [U.S. District Judge Paul] Magnuson said, his order will take effect. That means that the operation of Buford Dam will return its “baseline” operation of the mid-1970s.

“Thus…only Gainesville and Buford will be allowed to withdraw water from the lake,” Magnuson said….

The topic will have to be explored, but the immediate question that comes to mind is the effect this will have on House Republicans from Georgia.

The hard-line tactics of Tom Price of Roswell, Lynn Westmoreland of Coweta County, Paul Broun of Athens and Phil Gingrey of Marietta — who have become prominent bomb-throwers for the GOP — have not pleased Democrats who control the chamber, we understand.

This is not a surprise. Raised nails tend to get hammered.

But last week, U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby, the Republican from Alabama, was able to insert language favorable to his state’s water position into a 2010 appropriations bill.

House Republicans from Georgia — Nathan Deal was the face of the effort — attempted to answer with language of their own, in the House version. (Four Georgia Democrats — John Lewis, David Scott, Hank Johnson and John Barrow — were part of the effort, but Deal and Gingrey were the lead sponsors.)

The attempt was shut down. House leadership would not permit a vote.

Some will point out, with justification, that sheer numbers are at work here. Florida has 25 U.S. House members. Alabama has seven. Georgia has 13. Yet it can’t have helped that, on Monday, U.S. Rep. Paul Broun tried to torpedo the House agenda on Monday with a sudden motion to adjourn — which sent key Democrats scrambling.

Good relations in Congress have suddenly become as valuable as, say, water.

We understand that a rare meeting of the entire Georgia congressional delegation — Democrat and Republican, House and Senate — has been called for early next week in Washington. To make sure everyone is on the same page.

But among Republicans, look for U.S. Sens. Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss to take the lead on negotiations. This is where a history of congeniality pays off.

Chambliss and Isakson have put out the following joint statement:

“The judge’s ruling places the decision of allocation of water from Lake Lanier solely on the shoulders of Congress. As members of the U.S. Senate from Georgia, we will work tirelessly to reach an agreement that is in the best interest of Georgia while at the same time respecting the interests and concerns of Florida and Alabama. This is a huge challenge, but it is a challenge we must meet.”

Gingrey was the first House member to respond, Democrat or Republican:

“While I am greatly disappointed by the Court’s ruling, the decision leaves little choice but to seek consensus through the legislative process. Congressional inaction is no longer an option, and I stand ready and committed to work in a bipartisan way for a fair resolution that respects and protects the interests of Georgia, Florida, and Alabama.”

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68 comments Add your comment

Thirsty

July 17th, 2009
3:14 pm

This Judge from Minnesota may have just done more damage than Sherman ever could have dreamed.

Gary

July 17th, 2009
3:42 pm

Boy this will give a whole new meaning to word “Dry County” when the three years are up.

Really, who could actually see anything getting done in 3 years after we have spend 20 years fighting this thing.

Turd Ferguson

July 17th, 2009
3:42 pm

I guess the drought is back on again.

Jim Callihan

July 17th, 2009
3:43 pm

Jim, to your closing remark “Good relations in Congress have suddenly become as valuable as, say, water.”, I get your point, but take issue with the word “suddenly”. At the forming of this nation, there immediately arose a division that remains to this very day – the “Federalist”, who believed in the supreme rule over the very States that “freely surrendered limited powers”…and the “Staters” (or “state rights”) group that held to the word “limited” in the Constitution they all, collectively had drawn and signed.

Thomas Jefferson (staunchly “state rights”) warned of the impending consequence – Civil War. Sixty four years later…after the very-little-ever-mentioned “Kentucky & Virginia Resolutions” (1798) (the right of nullification), his claims were realized. Yet many, if not most, still ignorantly believe the war was over “slavery”.

Jim…Citizens, this is what happens with an over-reaching federal government. By nature, the monster must be continually fed, as it has shown no ability to restrain itself. Even yesterday, Vice-President was telling the nation that we “must keep on spending to avoid bankruptcy”. Now I realize that this is more of a side-bar to the subject, than the subject matter at hand, but it is very telling of what happens when States do not provide for their own citizens in “self-sufficient” manner, but instead, rely on the federal government to do what otherwise states would have done for themselves, or else reached a “carrying capacity” regarding resources.

Two hundred and ten yers later – the issue is as relevant as it ever was; the real point of your article, I believe?

Either way, the fact remains that this state is in one helluva mess. Why? Governors and Assembly-persons being derelict of duty – insufficient foresight for the members of this state who placed them in their stead.

Woe is us. Will we ever learn? This ain’t about “red or blue” people…it’s about our very own sustainability. To hell with the empty campaign rhetoric and party platforms folks – we need vision. We need genuine leadership. And Sir Galloway – Congress has been devoid of that for as long as I can remember – throw in the Whitehouse, as well.

Again – will we ever learn?

Turd Ferguson

July 17th, 2009
3:43 pm

The affected counties should just install pumps etc above and below the lake. Maybe thats to simple?

Frustrated

July 17th, 2009
4:00 pm

Maybe we need to find alot of “endangered species” in the Atlanta area and keep all the water for them and hang Alabama and Florida out to dry. Just another example of how Democrats and completely distroying this country.

cajdawg

July 17th, 2009
4:04 pm

Can we use stimulus money to build another lake?

Trust me

July 17th, 2009
4:15 pm

They were probably all educated right here in Georgia as well. Let’s see. What’s a PC way of calling those Georgia boys “dumba$$es”. Now, get out there and burn some more bridges, burn Atlanta, burn a swath of land all the way to Savannah. Idiots.

Take back Alabama!

July 17th, 2009
4:24 pm

It’s time for GA to call out the National Guard, dissolve Alabama, and get our land back from those greedy reckless SOBs!

Steve

July 17th, 2009
4:29 pm

The water intakes for Atlanta, Cobb County, Dekalb County, and others are all DOWNSTREAM of Lake Lanier. The issue is not, and never has been, about withdrawing water directly from the lake. The issue is water storage. Georgia wants less water sent downstream to AL and FL in order to store water for use during droughts. A slower release would still allow for the aformentioned counties and cities to withdraw their water from the river. It would also slow down the rate at which the lake is drawn down. There is a limit, though, to how much each entity is permitted to withdraw from the river. They are also fighting to have those numbers increased.

JohnD

July 17th, 2009
4:30 pm

Looks like Georgia has the Red State Blues.

Thanks to Gingrey, Deal, Westmoreland and the rest of our hard-right Congressmen who always play to their partisan bases, the dems in Congress have no incentive to help us now.

Maybe its a good thing and we’ll finally see some planning and conservation in this state. But I doubt it.

Gary

July 17th, 2009
4:33 pm

Obviously no one has read the judgment. This decision puts most of the blame on the Corps for their failure to manage the Lake Lanier project the way Congress authorized them to do so. It basically says that the Corps was wrong in allowing other municipalities other than Gainesville, Buford, or Gwinnett to take water from Lake Lanier as it had no prior congressional authorization to do so.

In English, it means that Atlanta and other metro counties not named Gwinnett or the cities of Gainesville and Buford failed to get congressional approval when they wanted to take water from Lanier or the Chattahoochee River.

I hate this decision just as much the rest of you. But what I hate even more is the total failure of the U.S. Corp of Engineers and our elected officials at the time to get the proper authorization for water supply. Lake Lanier and Buford Damn are 52 years old. In 52 years the COE failed to follow the rules that govern them and sadly it took 52 years for a judge to set them straight. Now we have that lame excuse of a Congress to look forward to helping the area keep water.

[...] about Georgia’s chances at getting a legislative solution in the Congress. Jim Galloway reports that Georgia’s Congressional delegation is filled with GOP bomb-throwers and notes Sen. [...]

CamelToeElvis

July 17th, 2009
4:37 pm

I could not possibly care less about alabama or florida. They can die of thirst. They are stealing water from another state. Alabama & Florida can go find there own damn water.

Water

July 17th, 2009
4:41 pm

We had congressional approval. That lake would not have been there without Mayor Hartsfield. This court is a cruel joke. And if Gov. Riley thinks this is some economic windfall for Alabama, just wait. Our entire region is going to go down the tubes and Alabama is coming with us.

DeKalb Conservative

July 17th, 2009
4:49 pm

Not to sound ignorant, and obviously it can’t be built by year’s end, but wouldn’t the problem be partly solved if another source was built downstream, near the counties?

This would allow the lake to be drained at what ever pace they want, only to be gathered downstream.

Crazy I know, but if anyone is listening I suggest flooding Jimmy Carter Blvd and run it through Buford Highway :)

Gary

July 17th, 2009
4:49 pm

Water, yes congressional approval was needed to build the dam and lake. However, Congress never approved anyone other than Buford-Gwinnett County (1970s) and the City of Gainesville (who had an existing intake in the Chattahoochee River) to take water from the Lake or River. No approval of water storage was made for the lake. The Corp of Engineers started issuing permits for local municipalities to draw water from the system. However the Corps did not have the authority to do this without the approval of Congress, who gave the COE management responsibility of the lake, and would need that authority since it constitutes a major operational change from the initial act that Congress authorized. The fault mainly lies with the Corps, but the leaders in Georgia over the years should have sought opinion from Congress on the matter and taken the proper steps because, after all, critical water supply is at stake.

Gary

July 17th, 2009
4:55 pm

And Water, yes Mayor Hartsfield played a big role in lobbying Congress for the lake. But please don’t take away the power of Governor Talmadge and Senator’s Richard Russell and Walter George who played a much bigger role in getting their colleagues to go along with funding this.

DeKalb Conservative

July 17th, 2009
5:00 pm

Gary-

Very informative. You have an excellent understanding of local history, which I don’t.

In your opinion, could GA protest on behalf of “state’s rights” and cause a showdown on a national level?

Let’s be honest if the metaphorical switch is flipped, wouldn’t that leave GA no other recourse?

Keith

July 17th, 2009
5:03 pm

Time to boycott Florida… no more Panama City. Call the places you normally stay at and the restaurants where you dine and tell them you won’t be back and why

professional skeptic

July 17th, 2009
5:14 pm

Today it seems counterintuitive that citizens of Georgia cannot consume water that rains down in Georgia, is collected in Georgia and is stored in a reservoir built on Georgia land. But the fact is, Georgia’s politicians from that era failed miserably to protect our state’s interests when Lake Lanier was built — and once the deed was done and the water fights with AL and FL began — they failed miserably year after year to come up with a contingency plan in the event that Georgia wound up as the loser in these fights.

Well, here we are, with a big ol’ “L” painted across our collective forehead, and our only hope now is for Georgia’s politicians to play nice with the rest of Congress. Good luck on that! Georgia is redder than a babboon’s a$s, and its bumbling, Republican leadership is comprised of nothing but tantrum throwers, obstructionists and antagonists, not compromisers or diplomats.

Normally, I’d think watching them go hat in hand to a Democratic Congress would be free comedy, but it’s hard to crack a smile when the situation is so dire.

People, Georgia is the ninth-largest state in the union, and one of the fastest growing. When are we going to elect leadership that can grasp this? When will we finally elect leaders with vision and foresight? Who can think five, 10, 20, 50 years down the road and plan accordingly? As it stands, time after time, we keep sending a bunch of backwoods, bumbling bubba boys who can’t see any further into the future than their next huntin’ trip with Joe-Bill and Bobby-Ray. We need to move beyond our current era of electing do-nothing governors and sending a bunch of clowns and knuckleheads to the Legislature.

What are we going to do if we can’t successfully kiss up to Congress over the next three years? Exercise eminent domain over all of sparsely populated, “agrarian” Milton, GA to create a new reservoir? Like I said, this could get funny, if the subject matter weren’t so dire.

Bo Chambliss Lobbyist

July 17th, 2009
5:16 pm

Don’t worry Saxby will take care of this. Send your check(made to cash) and Saxby will be working for you. Remember that the people of Ala & Fla will be sending checks also. With Saxby Lobbyist are always 1st. By the way Saxby was just kidding about working for Georgia in the run off.

BabsTolstoy

July 17th, 2009
5:18 pm

As an Alabamian I think it is a fine ruling. Finally fairness has prevailed. For years Atlanta’s MO has been to simply take what it needs for its growth regardless of it being illegal because it held the tactical advantage of being upstream. This is against the law. You cannot in your own efforts of self improvement adversely affect those downstream relying on the same resource. People in Atlanta may not like this but it is a simple fact, and if this case was ever to be settled fairly this is the only way it could have gone. It was dillusional on the part of Georgians to simply believe this could go on forever without obtaining other provisions for their needs. In the process of pursuing matters in the way they have they have not only left themselves in one hell of a pickle but have also alienated the sympathies of their neighbors on whom they may need to rely. This was just plain stupid. Ask Tennessee if it is okay with them if you build a pipeline to the Tennessee River for Atlanta’s needs. If you have followed this issue you already know the answer. The ancient surveyor’s glitch is as weak of a mechanism for satisfying your needs as the previous strategies. Don’t waste your time. And I think we already know how Florida and Alabama feel about this issue. That leaves South Carolina, desalination plants on the Atlantic, or some patched together system of limiting your needs and getting along better with your neighbors. Good Luck. If the Federal Government is true to its word you will need it.

jesus fernandez

July 17th, 2009
5:32 pm

Jesus will reveal himself….

[...] has changed. Regardless, the AJC’s Jim Galloway, who knows where the bodies are buried, writes that Georgia’s Congressional delegation has scheduled a rare meeting on Monday to get [...]

Water

July 17th, 2009
5:36 pm

Metro Atlanta’s water use accounts for 1-2% of the flow at the GA-FL line. This isn’t about fairness to Alabama, poor water planning, or anything else. This is about a malicious attack on Metro Atlanta by Alabama. They are trying to end our livlihoods because they think they will see an economic benefit. Period.

TW

July 17th, 2009
5:45 pm

Makes no difference at all. When Oxendine is Governor, we will secede! And we will take our water with us! And we will pass a law against ANY form of education in our new nation!

Still haven’t figure out how we’re going to pay for our militia without taxing anyone – but we’ll do it! You Betcha!

YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

professional skeptic

July 17th, 2009
5:50 pm

Water, it has everything to do with lack of planning and foresight. That, and also the fact that our bumbling, backwoods politicians from 50 years ago didn’t have the mental fortitude to realize were getting hoodwinked out of the water that falls on our own land. They could have fought to get Georgia an equal seat at the table, and also plan for the Metro region’s growth. Decade after decade, they completely, utterly failed to do this.

CrimsonRedScarlett

July 17th, 2009
5:56 pm

Any word on the Georgia-Tennessee state line dispute?
That could now be interesting.

Parched

July 17th, 2009
6:41 pm

Hypothetical:

You own a home, with a large yard that runs off into a creek that runs through your backyard. That creek flows into a pond in your neighbor’s yard. Your neighbor built a dam so he could use the pond to water his yard, and run a trout pond to make money.

You decide you want to capture the runoff from your yard, so you can use that water to water your garden and wash your car. Your neighbor gets angry and sues you, claiming that the water is not yours, and hurts his trout pond business.

For the moment, forget about what Judge Magnuson ruled, or the claims made by the USACE, FL, or AL. If the metro area counties responded by building their own resevoirs, they would be sued by all the parties, the USACE, FL, AL, Sierra Club, SPLC, et al claiming that any tributary of the hooch or lanier is owned by the USACE. They will never let the state do what it needs to do to secure its future. This is about politics, and nothing else.

Gov. Perdue and GA Legislature: You will never get anything done in Congress. The Congress and the WH will use the state’s weekened position to achieve THEIR political goals. Grow a set and do what needs to be done to secure the Georgia’s future.

First, pass a resolution that states that any rain that falls within the borders of the State of Georgia is considered the property of the state of georgia and landowners within.

Then proceed to pass laws that fund and build our own resevoirs.

GROW A PAIR…WILL YOU!

Parched

July 17th, 2009
6:47 pm

Lastly, even if we could tap the TN River, the water would have to be pumped uphill. Atlanta sits 400 ft higher than that “disputed” section of the TN River.

| The Georgia Conservative

July 17th, 2009
7:22 pm

[...] Gov. Sonny Perdue has responded to the ruling and said he will appeal. Meanwhile, Democrat and Republican members from Congress will meet next week to discuss this problem. [...]

Kman Chronicles

July 17th, 2009
8:00 pm

BabsTolstoy, NO one, no really, no one cares about either alabama or florida. I say get your own
damn water, start conserving, which neither state has had to do for the last 3-5 years. Alabama and
Florida can eat the salt water, but LL and the rest of the water COMING OUT OF GEORGIA BELONGS TO GEORGIA REGARDLESS OF WHAT A TURD JUDGE SAYS.

[...] In the meantime, the current withdrawal levels from Lake Lanier will be allowed to stay the same — but not increase, U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson ruled. And if a political solution cannot be worked out in three years, the judge said, his order will take effect. [...] “Thus…only Gainesville and Buford will be allowed to withdraw water from the lake,” Magnuson said in a 97-page order. “The court recognizes that this is a draconian result. It is, however, the only result that recognizes how far the operation of the Buford [Dam] project has strayed from the original authorization.” Gov. Sonny Perdue has responded to the ruling and said he will appeal. Meanwhile, Democrat and Republican members from Congress will meet next week to discuss this problem. [...]

Gary

July 17th, 2009
10:22 pm

Dekalb Conservative……I guess Georgia, under it’s 10th amendment right, could stage a state protest. However, the damage was done with the congressional act that was passed in late 40s/early 50s creating the lake and the river system. When that was done, GA pretty much gave the land to the federal government. You see, the feds own Lake Lanier and the rivers it feeds.

Now the gray area are the streams and creeks that feed into Lanier. I can’t tell for certain if the COE is responsible for the management of these water areas. If Georgia has governing rights over these streams, then they can essentially take over these feeder streams and in turn create their own reservoirs. However, that could create a totally difficult issue that will most definitely go to court.

The logical thing would be to appeal this decision. Unfortunately this will go to the DC court of appeals and Georgia will more than likely not have a favorable position. The other option is to see if the congressional delegation can get anything done. Unfortunately while Georgia yields more power in Congress than Alabama; Florida yields more power than GA and AL combined and will shoot down any resolution favoring Georgia. The best option at this point is to appeal the decision, work with the other two states in good faith in the background and hope for the best. When the legislature reconvenes in January, our leaders better get together and plan our water needs for the next half century.

Gary

July 17th, 2009
10:25 pm

Oh an enough of this whole TN River stuff. No judge or jury whatsoever is going to redraw the state lines granting the little portion that probably should have been in GA to begin with back to the state. This too was congressional doing and unfortunately that would not be easy to resolve either. We need to start thinking outside the box and get creative instead of creating more water wars.

Geezguys

July 17th, 2009
11:36 pm

You mean we can’t just take what we want and screw everyone else? Wow, no wonder all these Republicans are shocked and dismayed.

BabsTolstoy

July 18th, 2009
12:26 am

Kman, I don’t think the Judge cares in the end if you think he’s a turd, although that is obviously a very well thought out and persuasive arguement. Where did you get your legal training? Clearly not the University of Alabama, that concept is way beyond their capacity. Instead I like Gary’s thinking. It accepts that Georgia has limited power here and should appeal to the better side of its neighbors for a reasoned solution. While Georgia is clearly at fault, as the Judge has shown, I think that by showing a little humility and graceful genuflection they will find an agreeable audience with their neighbors, a litttle Come to Jesus moment if you will. In spite of what some citizens of Georgia believe Florida and Alabama are not hoping to benefit from your pain, I don’t think that has ever even occured to us, instead we would just like for you to stop enforcing the results of your poor planning on us. You’re a big city, grow up, take responsiblity, act like adults. Then when you have done that we can talk. And you will need to talk, we hold all the cards unless you can learn to turn red clay into water, it is only a matter of time.

Billy Bob

July 18th, 2009
6:20 am

Georgia State water policy is and has been a complete disaster. The history of it goes back decades and continues through today.

Now all of the sudden the media thinks that the governorships of the three states can suddenly solve this problem? Or that Congress will come together for a solution?

Citizens and stakeholders up and down the river system have had enough of the foolishness eminating from the three state capitals– and now is the time for a massive change. No longer should we rely on our state governments to solve this problem.

Georgia’s state government has decided to make its stand by saying that the world of water centers only around Lake Lanier- a foolish and now costly decision. The state has totally ignored the needs of the river sysem and lakes south of Atlanta and has often watched and agreed to sacrifice these resources just to protect Atlanta.

Not only should Perdue be held accountable for this but so should Roy Barnes(who really led us down this broken road) and the previous Governors who have faled so miserably in thier management of water resources. This is the same state government that won’t allow any discussion of the damage done and linkage to to the river system by agricultural overuse of our states waters- the real major culprit in destroying the lakes of the Chattahoochee basin. (Strong agricultural lobby seeing that doesn’t happen)

Congress needs to look past the states for solutions. We have 20 years of proof they will do nothing but screw the situation even more. Maybe its time to look to citizens and stakeholders in the basin for solutions.

As for me — No one slapped the states on the butts and told them they represent my interests related to our water needs.Georgia has only myopically cared about Lake Lanier and nothing else. I intend to stand up and see if we can get more fellow citizens together to fight for a proper and well mannaged river system that encompasses all the issues- not just Lake Lanier! Maybe we should leave the states on the sidelines for once?

Imperial Sugar

July 18th, 2009
7:57 am

Glad we have Senator Chambliss in our back pocket, our Florida sugar farms get all the water they want.

TEDDY

July 18th, 2009
8:07 am

So Saxby and Johnny are going to negotiate water with Alabama and Tennessee like they did amnesty with Kennedy?

They will probably settle for I.O.U.’s with a settlement date of 2021.

By then Alpharetta will be a dust bowl and John Linder will be running a gator farm in Folkston. Selling snake oil didn’t work.

TEDDY

July 18th, 2009
8:08 am

Neil

July 18th, 2009
11:31 am

So let me see if I understand this….a reservoir….located in Georgia…that has been supplying water to the Atlanta metro area for 50 years, was not built to be a reservoir or provide water to Atlanta? So the billions of gallons in Lanier is only meant to supply water to mussels in Florida? Is that the court’s position? Someone slap me and wake me up.

This is one more reason that we need one big enima taken to our judicial system. Our government at all branches has lost any semblance of common sense. We have unelected judges making decisions that have far reaching impacts that I believe were never envisioned by our founding fathers.

Michelle

July 18th, 2009
11:41 am

Georgia has had over 20 years to settle this fairly and all they have done is delay and pass the taxpayers buck to attorneys who have made millions. We have had poor representation by our attorneys and our governors and all elected officials involved. This will be the best thing for Metro Atlanta because now they will have to use water responsibly.

DuBose Porter

July 18th, 2009
2:44 pm

This decision has done nothing more than underscore the need for a real State Water Plan that the Democratic Caucus and I have been advocating for years. The strategy of postponing real decisions, while only pretending to act responsibly has finally come home to roost in this decision.

Georgia’s Republican Leaders have been using lawyers and engineers and political fixers to put off this day, and all of the millions of dollars poured into that effort has finally come to nothing. Instead of investing in the science we needed to learn what our resources are, and the hard policy decisions to learn how we can most effectively use them, we have spent our money trying to move the water to where the developers and mortgage peddlers wanted the growth to occur.

Even now, we are pretending to develop a State Water Plan that has no force of law, and the piece of the Water Plan that does have legal force, the Metro District Plan, has just been shut down by a federal judge.

The Big Money Development Boomers have been paying big bucks for the fantasy that they would never have to face this reality. They have been able to enlist the present State Administration in this fairy tale, and now the federal court has said, in effect, ‘Time to close the story book, Humpty Dumpty has had a great fall.’

Georgians all want to do the right thing to protect and manage our natural resources. They have always wanted to do that, and the legislature has wanted to do that as well. The current Administration has wanted to cater to the people who funded their campaigns, and has avoided taking the hard steps to do the right thing.

As Governor of Georgia, I will do everything I can to make sure that every Georgian has enough clean water. I will enforce our existing laws to protect our water resources, and I will work with our legislature to finally make a real water plan that is based on facts and need, not fiction and greed.

Etowah

July 18th, 2009
3:25 pm

I think you are all missing the point, which is, that even if the judge had ruled in Georgia’s favor, there willl still not be enough water in North Georgia to supply the needs of Atlanta, if it continues to grow. Atlanta is simply very close to outgrowing its water supply, and if it continues to grow, in a few years, the water supply will be outgrown, regarless of what the courts or congress does.

Gary

July 18th, 2009
3:38 pm

Neil, thats just it. Atlanta nor any other city outside of Gainesville and Buford had proper authority to pull water from the Lake or River. Congress, not the COE, would have to grant this authorization. Our leaders have failed us and now we need real leadership to deal with this problem. It is fine that our esteemed Governor would like to appeal this decision, but his term ends before it is likely this gets taken up by the court of appeals. He needs to have a back up plan because so far our state has done nothing but lose decisions in the courts over this fight and frankly I don’t see that trend stopping.

Mr. Porter, as a Georgia voter I would love to hear yours, and other candidates, plans for our water needs. And I would like to see actual plans and not political spin. I think in light of everything, we deserve that.

Theobald Montegue, the third

July 18th, 2009
3:44 pm

Well, here is an idiot (BabsTolstoy) who thinks it’s just fine. Now, let’s see. Neither Alabama nor Florida have instigated water restrictions, so to them, it is fine to waste water coming/originating from
a neighboring state. Congress will overturn this one, and the morons from Al (BabsTolstoy) and subsequent morons from Florida can go elsewhere to find water. Or do without, matters little to me.

Tom

July 18th, 2009
3:49 pm

The solution is VERY simple. Buford can withdraw from the lake. So we need to dissolve the Balkan counties & municipalities in the metro area – and be annexed by Buford. Problem solved .

Base

July 18th, 2009
7:17 pm

Sorry Sony and his henchmen have totally mismanaged the water issue.The state will be sorry for giving this guy two terms.