Top court hears arguments in SC-NC water lawsuit

By MEG KINNARD, Associated Press Writer

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina's top prosecutor says he's pleased with oral arguments before the nation's highest court about why utilities and municipalities should stay out of a water dispute with North Carolina.

Attorney General Henry McMaster said Tuesday the justices peppered attorneys with questions during an hour-long hearing before the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 2007, South Carolina sued to stop North Carolina from draining the Catawba River basin. A special master helping resolve the dispute allowed the city of Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy and a water system into the case.

McMaster says the water should be apportioned between the states and then the third parties should hash out their shares with North Carolina.

The justices will rule later.

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