A special water master has found that Nebraska took more than its share of water from the Republican River in 2005 and 2006 and should pay Kansas $5.5 million for the breach.
But the recommendation submitted Friday to the U.S. Supreme Court rejected Kansas’ demands for $80 million and an order that would permanently shut off irrigation in more than 300,000 Nebraska acres.
The U.S. Supreme Court gave Kansas permission in 2011 to file a new petition over allegations that Nebraska used 25.7 billion gallons more in water that it should have in 2005 and 2006.
Use of the river’s water is governed by a 1943 compact between Colorado, Kansas and Nebraska. Colorado was given 11 percent of the water, while Nebraska was allotted 49 percent and Kansas 40 percent.