WICHITA, Kan. (AP) A federal judge has granted preliminary approval to a settlement of claims by thousands of Kansas landowners against three of the nation’s largest telecommunications companies.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Kenneth Gale said Thursday that the parties had done a “Herculean job” in solving the property rights dispute over installation of fiber-optic cable on railroad rights of way. The agreement comes in a lawsuit filed against Sprint Communications Co., Qwest Communication Co. and Level 3 Communications.
The proposal would resolve claims affecting about 459 miles of rights of way throughout Kansas. The Kansas deal is among 46 similar settlements now in the works nationally.
The settlement is expected to be worth more than $4.2 million in Kansas. Landowners get $2.98 million, while attorneys get $1 million.
Notices will be sent in July.