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Published November 12, 2013, 11:48 AM

Judge says Red River diversion group can help defend suit

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A judge says a Fargo group serving as public sponsor of a planned Red River diversion can help defend the project in a federal lawsuit.

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A judge says a Fargo group serving as public sponsor of a planned Red River diversion can help defend the project in a federal lawsuit.

The suit filed by the Richland-Wilkin Joint Powers Authority accuses the Army Corps of Engineers of planning a project that is overpriced and will damage farmland. The group says the diversion shouldn't move forward until further review of possible environmental impacts.

U.S. Magistrate Leo Brisbois ruled last week in favor of a request by the Red River Diversion Authority to join as a defendant in the suit. The authority is made up of city and county officials from the Fargo and Moorhead, Minn., area.

Diversion supporters say long-term protection is needed for residents who have had major flooding in four of the last five years.

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