Bill shielding NortWestern from lawsuit sparks intense lobbying
By HELENA (AP) - A measure that would shield NorthWestern Energy from a $3 billion lawsuit by Montana Power Co. shareholders has sparked intense lobbying here as supporters and critics prepare to follow the bill to the state House.
John Fitzpatrick, a NorthWestern lobbyist, said he views efforts to pass Senate Bill 458 as a kind of trial for the company, with state lawmakers as jury.
''We're going to a form of court,'' Fitzpatrick told The Great Falls Tribune. ''We're taking this to a jury of 150 citizens from across the state.''
The measure, sponsored by Sen. Walter McNutt, R-Sidney, has b...