HELENA — The opening of a crime lab in eastern Montana has been pushed back due to contract negotiations and construction costs.
Officials had expected the lab to be up and running by January. Mike Milburn is deputy chief of staff to the attorney general. He tells Lee Newspapers of Montana that the facility may not open until April.
The lab for testing and identifying drugs will be housed at Billings Clinic, where construction work is still being done to accommodate the new facility and make it more secure.
Milburn said Monday that contract negotiations are taking longer than expected because the clinic is new to state leases.
Yellowstone County Attorney Scott Twito has said the new lab will help clear the backlog of cases at the lab in Missoula.
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