BILLINGS — A special master appointed by the U.S. Supreme Court in a long-running dispute over state water rights says Wyoming is obligated to provide enough water to fill a reservoir in Montana.
But Special Master Barton Thompson Jr. is rejecting Montana’s bid to be reimbursed more than $4.6 million it has spent in the 2007 lawsuit against its southern neighbor.
Thompson said in a ruling this week that Montana is not entitled to costs incurred since February 2010. That’s when the Stanford University law professor issued an interim report in the case.
Montana claims it was shorted on water flowing down the Tongue River from Wyoming over 15 years. Thompson concluded the shortage was just two years and Montana deserves less than $36,000 in compensation.
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