Support Expansion of Egan Slough Zoning District

Why should we vote “FOR” this initiative?

By Jane Corwin

On June 5, all Flathead County voters will have the opportunity to vote “FOR Initiative No. 17-01—Add Property to the Egan Slough Zoning District.” The wording of this ballot initiative may sound quite obtuse and confusing. It is often this way with ballot initiatives. What does it mean and why is it important to all of us? Why should we vote “FOR” this initiative?

I will tell you why. By voting for the expansion of the Egan Slough Zoning District, we are doing the following:

  1. Stopping a super warehouse-sized water bottling plant that could produce and rinse 1.2 billion plastic bottles a year polluting our rivers, streams, aquifers with chemicals and residues, threatening bull trout and other fish and aquatic wildlife. This plant would be permitted to operate 24/7, 365 days a year, pumping more than 230 million gallons of water out of the ground, sending it out of state on county roads –150 trucks each day!
  2. Preserving our pristine valley, the Gateway to Glacier National Park and keeping Flathead Lake crystal clear.
  3. Protecting the agriculture and water rights of ALL the landowners in the Egan Slough – whose property values and access to clean water could be seriously compromised and threatened if this industrial activity were to be in their backyard.
  4. Protecting the water resource we ALL depend on. Our own 1,000-foot well water level has dropped 100 feet since we built our home 20 years ago above Flathead Lake. Without water, we have nothing.
  5. It will serve as a very important precedent for any future effort to take our water and ship it out of state. As water continues to become “liquid gold,” other water bottling plants will likely look to our valley as the next great place. Let’s do all we can to protect “The Last Great Place.”

The upcoming ballot initiative, which required more than 12,000 county voter signatures last year, will stop this water bottling plant if approved.

All you need to do is: VOTE “FOR ENACTMENT of Resolution 1594C to add property to the Egan Slough Zoning District.”

Jane Corwin