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Court gives Kerr Dam lawsuit class-action status

By The Associated Press
Published On: Dec 30 2012 10:37:03 AM MST


The Montana Supreme Court has ruled that litigation concerning the Kerr Dam and possible property damage can proceed as a class-action lawsuit.
The Daily Inter Lake reports (http://bit.ly/12QL4FJ) that the court on Thursday ruled 5-2 to overturn the finding of Flathead District Judge Kitty Curtis that the cause of the erosion would have to be shown individually for each property on Flathead Lake and on parts of the Flathead River.
The high court said damage caused by fluctuating lake levels has to be considered in aggregate because the level of the lake is uniform and cannot be adjusted for individual lakeshore properties.
But the high court also said any liability of defendants Montana Power Co. and PPL Montana would have to be determined on a case-by-case basis.