There is a class action lawsuit, which is about a land owners right to pump groundwater in the Antelope Valley. This lawsuit addresses a property owner’s right to pump their own water beneath their property. Currently State Law allows property owners to pump and use groundwater beneath the surface on their land. In Los Angeles County, however, the naturally available supply of water in the Antelope Valley Basin may not be adequate to satisfy everyone who wants to use that water.
The suit is the Willis Class Action which requests the Court to rule that private landowners in the Antelope Valley who do not presently pump water on their properties retain the right to use the water underlying their properties. The Court has not yet ruled on these claims. This will affect land owners who wish to build custom homes on county land, but not city residents. Most of Antelope Valley is rural residential and agricultural land, so the ruling targets private land owners and farmers.
The Case Number is 1-05-CV-049053 at Santa Clara County Court under Judge Komar, with the next calendar date set for July 15, 2010. The schedule indicates that this will be the deadline for expert witness disclosure and exchange of expert witness information, including any reports prepared by such experts, and any party who intends to call non-expert witnesses to provide percipient testimony must file their statements listing such witness(s). The court calendar is set through Sept. 27, 2010 where the Court Trial Phase 3 takes place, (Status of Valley Aquifer and Issue of Overdraft)10 days with all discovery to be completed 30 days before trial and all motions shall be heard no later than 15 days before trial date.
The lawsuit has been dragging on for years now with the essential position by Los Angeles County claiming adverse possession, and rescinding property owner and residents' rights to their own water? We will keep you updated here as this litigation progresses.