The Fourth Appellate District Court of Appeals issued its decision denying a petition for rehearing in the Michael Abatti v. Imperial Irrigation District case, according to a press release.
“As we have said all along, and the court agrees, the owner of the Imperial Valley’s water rights is the Imperial Irrigation District. The owner of the district is the people that it serves. We are very pleased to learn the court has denied the petition for a rehearing, but we are prepared to continue defending against any future efforts to re-litigate this historic decision,” said Norma S. Galindo, IID board president. “In response to the petition for rehearing, the court clarified some language of the original decision and our attorneys’ initial reaction is that the changes make it even stronger in favor of the district.”
In its unanimous decision of July 16, the Fourth District Court of Appeals affirmed the owner of the Imperial Valley’s water rights is the Imperial Irrigation District. While this was the core finding in its unanimous decision, the three-judge panel went further and reversed the 2017 ruling by Imperial County Superior Court Judge Brooks Anderholt in favor of Abatti, who sued the District over its 2013 Equitable Distribution Plan.