High court to hear Montana dams lawsuit
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court is entering a $40 million dispute between an energy company and Montana that could turn on the experiences of the Lewis and Clark expedition.
The justices said Monday they will hear an appeal from PPL Montana of a state court decision ordering the company to pay $40 million in rent for placing its hydroelectric dams in riverbeds owned by the state.
The ownership of the waterways turns on whether they were navigable when Montana became a state in 1889. Both the company and the state base part of their argument on the journey of Meriwether Lewis and William...