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State-Tribal Relations Interim Committee announces support for Montana Water Rights Protection Act

Posted at 3:45 PM, Sep 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-02 11:26:34-04

HELENA — Members of the State Tribal Relations Interim Committee have submitted a letter to the US Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, voicing support for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes Water Compact.

The Water Rights deal is part of the Montana Water Rights Protection Act.

The act was introduced by Republican Senator Steve Daines, and is co-sponsored by Democrat Senator Jon Tester.

Daines announced the settlement back in December, saying under the agreement the tribe would relinquish 97 percent of water rights claims with prejudice.

In exchange, the tribe would be awarded $1.9billion dollars in damages, and money to repair irrigation and road infrastructure.

The letter was approved by the committee by a vote of seven to one.