Missoula
45° F
Overcast
Overcast
Kalispell
44° F
Rain
Rain
Bozeman
43° F
Overcast
Overcast
Advertisement

Feds halt funding for $361M pipeline

By The Associated Press
Published On: Apr 21 2013 10:24:46 AM MDT
cash
BOX ELDER, Mont -

Federal officials have temporarily stopped funding a $361 million water pipeline for a Native American reservation in Montana after learning that millions of project dollars went missing.
    
Michael Ryan of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation says Chippewa Cree tribal leaders have replaced the missing money. But he says federal funding for the pipeline won't resume until they show they have permanently fixed accounting and other problems.
    
Congress approved the project to bring reliable drinking water to the poverty-stricken reservation in northern Montana.
    
It's unclear what effect the funding delay will have on pipeline construction, which is nearly a quarter complete.
    
Tribal officials said in a statement Saturday that they are actively working with the federal agency on the issues raised by Ryan.
    
Kenneth Blatt St. Marks, a former tribal chairman, said the irregularities are among several alleged corruption issues on the Rocky Boy's reservation.