Taking of Hydroelectric Power Plants' Riparian Rights Upheld After North Carolina Supreme Court Review

Boydoh & Hale attorney Scott Hale represents five hydroelectric power plants in their lawsuit against the Piedmont Triad Regional Water Authority. The Water Authority's construction of the Randleman Dam and operation of Randleman Lake for a public water supply will result in the ultimate removal of 30.5 million gallons of water a day from the Deep River. The power plants have used this water to generate clean, renewable hydroelectric power for years. In a unanimous decision, the North Carolina Court of Appeals ruled that the Water Authority's removal of this water is a taking of the power plants' riparian rights, for which the Water Authority must compensate the power plants. The North Carolina Supreme Court granted discretionary review of the Court of Appeals' decision. After fully reviewing the matter and hearing oral argument, the North Carolina Supreme Court refused to reverse the Court of Appeals' decision. A jury trial will be held to determine the compensation due the power plants.



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