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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:The appellants, Donald H. Cummins, Betty Ann Bradfield Cummins, Thomas W. Cummins and William Bradfield Cummins, own property on a high bluff overlooking Lake Travis and abutting land owned by the appellee, the Travis County Water Control and Improvement District No. 17. The Cumminses applied to the district for a license to build a boat dock on a part of the lake subject to the district’s regulation. After the district denied the license, the Cumminses sought a declaratory judgment that they have rights to use and enjoy their land as waterfront property, inclusive of the right to construct a recreational boat dock, because they are riparian or littoral owners of land along the shore of Lake Travis or, in the alternative, because they possess an easement or quasi-easement entitling them to such rights. The district responded with a motion for summary judgment, and the trial court granted it. The Cumminses appealed. HOLDING:Affirmed. The Cumminses assert on appeal that the summary judgment should be reversed because genuine issues of material fact remain. The Cumminses first claim that, because their property borders a lake, they have littoral rights “to use their property as waterfront property.” The district asserts that the Cumminses’ property is not vested with either riparian or littoral rights and that, even if it were, those rights would not entitle the Cumminses to moor a private, recreational boat dock on the district’s land. For a landowner to establish that his land is riparian or littoral under Texas Water Code �11.001(b), the land must have certain characteristics. For a lakefront property owner to establish that his land is vested with littoral rights, he must 1. be able to trace his title back to a grant from the sovereign between 1823-1895 and/or present a certificate of adjudication from the State, and 2. establish that his land, as granted in the deed, borders a natural lake with a “normal flow” of water. The Cumminses do not dispute that their chain of title originated with a grant from the state of Texas in 1904; their expert land surveyor testified to this in his affidavit. Without addressing the fact that Texas ceased recognizing common law riparian rights in grants of waterfront property from the sovereign after 1895, the Cumminses claim only that, because the 1904 grant mentions “the meanders of the Colorado River” in its property description, they have riparian or littoral rights based on their ownership of land that has “lateral contact with the water.” The court holds that the fact that the Cumminses cannot trace their title back to a grant from the sovereign prior to 1895 is sufficient to establish that their land is not vested with littoral rights. In the alternative, however, the court holds that the district also established that the Cumminses are not littoral owners because their chain of title did not convey land appurtenant to a natural lake. The court points out that the adjacent water referenced in the Cumminses’ deeds is an artificial lake, rather than a natural body of water, and the waters filling that lake are not considered its “normal flow,” but are instead floodwaters. In response to the district’s denial of their application for a boat dock license, the Cumminses also initially urged that they had littoral rights entitling them “to construct docks and other improvements.” The district, therefore, sought and obtained summary judgment on the basis that the Cumminses have no property right entitling them to construct a boat dock on the submerged lands that are held by the state in trust for the public and are validly regulated by the water control and improvement district, as an agent of the State, for the purpose of providing safe drinking water to the public. The court held that the summary judgment was properly granted because the case cited by the Cumminses did not support their claim that an owner of non-littoral land adjacent to a water district is entitled to construct a boat dock in violation of a water district’s regulations, which protect the public’s interest in safe drinking water. The court concluded that because the state owns the water and submerged lands over which the Cumminses sought to construct a private, recreational boat dock, the district was authorized to deny the Cumminses’ application for a license. Finally, in response to the Cumminses’ remaining points, the court holds that the Cumminses’ chain of title did not convey an express easement to use the water and the Cumminses have not made apparent, continuous, and necessary use of the water to support an implied easement. The court also holds that the district’s 200-foot regulation does not result in a compensable taking of the Cumminses’ property because it is a legitimate exercise of the state’s police power that has not substantially interfered with the Cumminses’ use and enjoyment of their land. The court additionally holds that the district’s warning-sign regulation does not constitute an inverse condemnation of the Cumminses’ land because it has not resulted in a permanent, physical occupation of the land. The court also holds that the district’s 1000-foot regulation is valid because it does not exceed the authority expressly granted to the district by statute. OPINION:Jan P. Patterson, J., Kidd, Patterson and Puryear; Justice Kidd Not Participating.

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