The attorneys of Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP represent irrigation districts, canal companies, and individual farmers and ranchers with their water rights needs. We have represented many water rights claimants in the Snake River Basin Adjudication, in private litigation and in administrative proceedings before the Idaho Department of Water Resources. Our representation extends from the initiation of a claim for a water right, throughout the process of development of the rights, permits and licenses, and also to leases, water bank transactions, sales and transfers of water rights. We help protect water right holders from injury to their rights from other users and have extensive experience with ground and surface water disputes and conjunctive management of surface and ground water. We also protect water rights against federal reserved rights claims. We represent irrigation entities in all aspects of their dealings with the Bureau of Reclamation. You would be hard pressed to find a water law case in the State of Idaho where this firm was not involved in the past twenty years.
Water rights work involves significant overlap with the laws, federal and state, of easements and rights-of-way. We are experienced in obtaining and defending easements and right-of-way from encroachment.
We have unparalleled depth of experience with and provide legal advice to all types of governmental, special district and non-profit delivery entities on their unique governance and compliance issues based on decades representing these entities.
Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP represents clients in state and federal courts, and in state and federal administrative proceedings and enforcement actions, concerning Superfund sites, CERCLA, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act, and NEPA. We also advise clients on compliance and regulatory requirements under these acts, including NPDES, TMDLs, wetlands, clean-up obligations and consultations with agencies under these acts. We have helped develop proposals for Water Quality Standards and participated in rulemaking under the Clean Water Act. We have defended civil and criminal enforcement actions brought by EPA for alleged violations of the wetlands and other Clean Water Act programs. We have worked to defend clients at all of the Idaho’s major superfund sites and at many other mining sites in the state that are not listed in the National Priorities List. At the other end of the spectrum, we have helped clients obtain permits from federal and state agencies to engage in their proposed activities and worked to successfully obtain certification under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act, as well as NPDES and other permits. We have worked with permittees on federal projects to consult with the Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries to obtain coverage for their activities under the Endangered Species Act and have experience with the major listed species that may be affected.
The firm’s attorneys have provided advice to mining companies on a wide variety of issues and have represented clients in litigation arising from their mining interests including permitting, defending their authorization to operate, environmental litigation, mining claim disputes, land entry matters, and the General Mining Act and the Mineral Leasing Act.
We have worked with the agencies in their analysis of the proposed projects and in obtaining necessary permitting. We have regularly intervened in lawsuits brought by special interests to stop approved projects. We are especially pleased with the outcome of the Smoky Canyon litigation, where the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the approval of a mining project against a vast array of claims, and it recognized that open pit mining was a non-point source under the Clean Water Act. We have also represented mining companies involved in obtaining rights-of-way to their mining operations, including condemnation where negotiations fail to produce a satisfactory result.
Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP regularly represents ranchers and other entities in public land use matters related to grazing, mining and other land use matters, including administrative and judicial proceedings. We regularly represent the interests of ranchers whose right to use their allotments have been altered by the BLM and we defend and intervene in lawsuits seeking to restrict ranchers’ rights to use public lands as authorized by FLPMA and the Taylor Grazing Act. Mining companies regularly consult with us on how to make their operations on public lands run more effectively when dealing with the federal land management agencies.
Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP has a long history of assisting our clients make the most of the valuable renewable energy resource that their water rights interests in the State of Idaho provide. Through the years we have provided legal guidance through the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s licensing and exemption process, Idaho Department of Water Resources administrative permitting, contracting with the Bureau of Reclamation and Army Corps of Engineers, drafting state and federal legislation, consulting with the resource agencies, and assisting with power sales and construction contracts, to bring hydroelectric facilities on-line for our clients. In addition, Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP has engaged a tremendous team of experts in the fields of hydroelectric facility design and construction, energy production forecasting, power sales contracting, and bond financing who regularly consult with the Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP team to make hydroelectric production possible for our clients. Barker Rosholt & Simpson has helped make the Arrowrock Hydroelectric Facility, and numerous in conduit small hydropower projects a reality. We remain counsel to Lucky Peak Power Plant and the entities that own and operate hydroelectric facilities on the Boise and Snake Rivers and throughout the state.
Easements and Rights of Way
The firm’s attorneys have extensive experience in easements, rights of way, licenses and other legal rights of access to property. We have obtained prescriptive easement judgments from the Courts and had them affirmed on appeal by the Supreme Court in several cases. We regularly counsel water users and water delivery entities on their rights of access under Title 42 of the Idaho Code. Our attorneys have worked to confirm rights of way across federal lands under the 1866 Mining Act, and many other federal statutes. We have also enforced rights of access for development of mines under Title 47, Chapter 9, Idaho Code.
We have extensive experience in review and drafting of agreements for construction projects. The firm’s attorneys are familiar with the public bidding statutes and requirements, including bid contests, representing both public entities and contractors seeking to do business with public entities. Additionally, the firm has represented numerous clients in arbitration, mediation and litigation arising from construction projects in both state and federal court. We also have broad experience in surety and insurance issues related to construction project, including a jury verdict of over one-half million dollars against a bonding agent.
General Commercial Litigation and Business Consulting
Barker Rosholt & Simpson LLP provides litigation assistance to our clients in matters arising from insurance coverage advice and litigation on behalf of insureds. We are particularly experienced in dealing with insurance companies to obtain defense and coverage for clients with claims against them related to construction projects, property damage, and claims for environmental damages. We have defended and prosecuted a wide variety of commercial litigation, including contractual disputes, antitrust, trademark, employment, and non-compete agreements. We also provide advice to our clients on a wide variety of business matters to avoid litigation, as part of business planning as well as on employment matters. We have substantial experience in drafting and negotiating contracts for all our clients’ needs.
Estate Planning – Wills and Trusts
Barker Rosholt & Simpson has a long history of providing estate planning and probate services. The firm can provide estate strategies ranging from simple wills and/or trusts to more advanced planning to achieve tax savings or implement unique distributive arrangements. The firm's probate practice focuses on the efficient and prompt administration of estates.