Montana Supreme Court overrules AG Fox in conservation easement case

Posted at 6:42 PM, Dec 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-11 20:42:49-05

HELENA – The Montana Supreme Court overruled an opinion by Attorney General Tim Fox over the governor’s approval of conservation easements.

The case revolves around 15,000 acre easement east of Glendive.

FWP negotiated the proposed easement.

It then went before the land board, who voted three-to-two delay action.

But Governor Steve Bullock went forward with the agreement anyway, arguing conservation easements don’t need to be approved the land board because they are not a
direct acquisition of land.

Senate President Scott Sales asked for a formal opinion on whether Bullock followed the law. Fox determined easements must go through the land board.

However, the Montana Supreme Court disagreed and overturned the attorney general’s opinion.

Montana Supreme Court hears arguments in Bullock-Fox dispute over approving conservation easements