Judge orders proposed Rio Grande decree to be made public

Associated Press: A U.S. judge serving as special master in the legal battle over management of the Rio Grande, one of North America’s longest rivers, has cleared the way for a proposed settlement to be made public.

The federal government had sought to keep details of the agreement reached by Texas, New Mexico and Colorado sealed, but the judge rejected that request. Under an order issued Friday, the proposal and associated briefs and exhibits will be made public next week as the states and federal attorneys prepare for an upcoming hearing on the merits of the proposal.

The case has been pending before the U.S. Supreme Court for nearly a decade, and the stakes are escalating as much of the West grapples with persistent drought.

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