OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. (KFOR) – A 18- year old lawsuit with 11 poultry companies is now one step closer to relief which would include limiting the outflow of waste under Oklahoma’s Attorney General Gentner Drummond.

Oklahoma sued 11 Arkansas poultry companies in 2005. The ruling found that poultry operators were responsible for environmental damage to State waters including Lake Tenkiller and the Illinois River Watershed. According to the lawsuit, the poultry waste from the farms that supply birds to these companies were found to be polluting the Illinois River. The river flows from Northwest Arkansas through Oklahoma to the Arkansas River.

A new deadline has now been set in place for March 17th which will allow AG Drummond to forge an agreement with the poultry companies and their subsidiaries.

“I am hopeful we can craft a plan that protects Oklahoma’s natural resources without placing unreasonable burdens on the companies,” says Drummond.

Attorney General Drummond has confirmed that productive discussions are underway.