DENVER — Colorado Attorney General John Suthers expressed his disappointment today that Kansas has resorted to litigation in the United States Supreme Court against Nebraska in their ongoing dispute over the Republican River. Although Kansas did not make any claims directly against Colorado, Colorado was named as a party as all three states are part of the Republican River Compact.
“We have seen in the past that litigation is not an effective or efficient alternative for resolution of interstate disputes,” Suthers said. “Instead I encourage Nebraska and Kansas to sit down with us to work on these present and future disagreements. Kansas has tried these claims once already, in non-binding arbitration, and the arbitrator found Kansas did not make its case, so I cannot see the utility or benefit in Kansas taking this route.”
The Republican River begins on the eastern plains of Colorado, flowing into Nebraska and then Kansas, where it flows into the Kansas River. The waters are divided among the three states by the 1942 Republican River Compact. In 1998, Kansas filed a lawsuit against Nebraska and named Colorado as a party to the Compact. The States settled that suit in 2002.