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HB 339 - Exempt Appropriation of Ground water "Exempt Wells or Springs"

HB 339 Provides a straight forward, simple approach to administer future Exempt wells or springs on tracts of land created on or after October 18, 2014

HB 339 :

  • Protects historic uses and Senior water rights, Exempt wells uses less than .06% of Montana's water (Nicklin Water Report 2016)
  • Is simple to administer and regulate.  Enactment will require well drillers to verify location and distance to existing wells. No additional responsibility on local or county governments
  • Recognizes the distinction between Open and Closed Basins
  • Protects recognized Stream Depletion Zones 
  • Provides incentives to utilize grey water systems
  • Maintains reasonable Flow (35 gallon per minute) and Volume (10 acre feet per years) per spacing requirement
  • Addresses density utilizing spacing of wells:
    • 330 feet between wells or developed springs in Open Basins
    • 660 feet between wells or developed springs in Closed Basins and Stream Depletion Zones

Spacing requirement applies to tracts of record created on or after October 18, 2014 or any further division of those tracts. Tracts that had complete application made to applicable governments body and fees paid to divide on October 17, 2014 are not subject to this Act.  Tracts that existed on or before October 17, 2014 are not subject to this Act, unless they are subsequently divided after October 18, 2014

HB 339 Does not prioritize water use. It does provide incentive to conserve, utilizing the grey water credit. 

HB 339 Will continue to allow historic "exempt well" development for all uses, with limits based on spacing. Most uses will still qualify including use to develop minor subdivisions

A broad coalition of stakeholder, water users have work to provide a workable solution, while not placing additional regulatory burdens on Montana's. After more than 20 years of rule making, legal and legislative attempts, HB 339 plans for the future.


SB 144 - Electronic Notification 

Please support SB 144 to revise landlord tenant laws to allow electronic notification (email). We believe that an email notification is reasonable and given that most email systems allow receipt notification analytics, an email is reliable and should qualify as a “reasonable diligence” by the landlord. In today’s world of smartphones and advances in technology -- where tenants now pay rent electronically -- the landlord should be allowed to send official notices via email.


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