Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 3. Retail Sales Restrictions

Proximity To Churches And Schools Restricted

16-3-306. Proximity to churches and schools restricted. (1) Except as provided in subsections (2) through (4), a retail license may not be issued pursuant to this code to any business or enterprise whose premises are within 600 feet of and on the same street as a building used exclusively as a church, synagogue, or other place of worship or as a school other than a commercially operated or postsecondary school. This distance must be measured in a straight line from the center of the nearest entrance of the place of worship or school to the nearest entrance of the licensee's premises. This section is a limitation on the department's licensing authority.

(2) The department may renew a license, approve the transfer of ownership of a license, or allow the current licensee to apply for a new license type for any establishment located in violation of this section if the licensee does not relocate an entrance any closer than the existing entrances and if the establishment:

(a) was located on the site before the place of worship or school opened; or

(b) was located in a bona fide hotel, restaurant, or fraternal organization building at the site since January 1, 1937.

(3) Subsection (1) does not apply to licenses for the sale of beer, table wine, or both in the original package for off-premises consumption.

(4) Subsection (1) does not apply within the applicable jurisdiction of a local government that has supplanted the provisions of subsection (1) as provided in 16-3-309.

History: En. Sec. 13, Ch. 84, L. 1937; Sec. 4-415, R.C.M. 1947; amd. and redes. 4-4-107 by Sec. 92, Ch. 387, L. 1975; R.C.M. 1947, 4-4-107; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 152, L. 1981; amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 662, L. 1983; amd. Sec. 196, Ch. 56, L. 2009; amd. Sec. 9, Ch. 591, L. 2023.