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Environmental groups sue state for failing to protect Raccoon River water quality


Two environmental groups — Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement and Food & Water Watch — filed a lawsuit against the state of Iowa today, claiming that the state has violated its obligation to protect the Raccoon River for the use and benefit of all Iowans. Roxanne Conlin, whose firm is among those representing the plaintiffs, said the suit is a response to inaction by elected officials in addressing the issue. A bill to establish a moratorium on new and expanded factory farms died in the first funnel on March 8. “As it is clear those elected do not have the willpower to take any substantive action, everyday Iowans are now turning to the courts to make Iowa’s waters clean and to protect their ability to enjoy the many outdoor activities that so many Iowans hold dear,” Conlin said in a release. The river is a source of drinking water for about 500,000 Iowa residents. The groups are represented by Public Justice, Food & Water Watch, Roxanne Conlin & Associates, and Channing Dutton of Lawyer, Lawyer, Dutton & Drake LLP.

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