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Supreme Court upholds voter-approved limits on water bottling plant near Creston

Montana Artesian Water Company near Creston, MT.
Nicky Ouellet
/
Montana Public Radio
Montana Artesian Water Company near Creston, MT.

The Montana Supreme Court has upheld a lower court ruling on a ballot initiative that imposed limits on a water bottling plant’s operations near Creston in the Flathead Valley.

The unanimous opinion from the state high court upheld the authority of zoning regulations approved by voters in 2018 that restrict how Montana Artesian Water Company can operate.

Representatives from the company argued the initiative violated multiple sections of Montana law and the plant should be allowed to grow its business under the old rules.

Justice Ingrid Gustafson wrote on behalf of the Supreme Court that the Flathead County District court was correct in allowing the initiative to go into effect.

The Supreme Court opinion allows Montana Artesian Water Company to continue operating within the bounds of the permits it had before the 2018 initiative. However, several of those permits are also under litigation.

Corin Cates-Carney manages MTPR’s daily and long-term news projects. After spending more than five years living and reporting across Western and Central Montana, he became news director in early 2020.
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