Former chief judge Loren Smith of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims entered final judgment in a water rights takings case. The award brought closure to a 17 year-long lawsuit ending in favor of a ranching family: “The court ruled that the Hages owned the water rights, ditch rights of ways, and range improvements on the federal grazing allotments. The court made clear that the government has the right to authorize grazing, but does not have the right to prevent the plaintiff from accessing their water rights on federal lands.” The judge's final order was for $14,243,542.00 including interest.
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