Montana Code Annotated 2023



Part 1. Streambeds

Penalties -- Restoration

75-7-123. Penalties -- restoration. (1) A person who initiates a project without written consent of the supervisors, performs activities outside the scope of written consent of the supervisors, violates emergency procedures provided for in 75-7-113, or violates 75-7-106 is:

(a) guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $500; or

(b) subject to a civil penalty not to exceed $500 for each day that person continues to be in violation.

(2) Each day of a continuing violation constitutes a separate violation. The maximum civil penalty is the jurisdictional amount for purposes of 3-10-301. A conservation district may work with a person who is subject to a civil penalty to resolve the amount of the penalty prior to initiating an enforcement action in justice's court to collect a civil penalty.

(3) In addition to a fine or a civil penalty under subsection (1), the person:

(a) shall restore, at the discretion of the court, the damaged stream, as recommended by the supervisors, to as near its prior condition as possible; or

(b) is civilly liable for the amount necessary to restore the stream. The amount of the liability may be collected in an action instituted pursuant to 3-10-301 if the amount of liability does not exceed $15,000. If the amount of liability for restoration exceeds $15,000, then the action must be brought in district court.

(4) Money recovered by a conservation district or a county attorney, whether as a fine or a civil penalty, must be deposited in the depository of district funds provided for in 76-15-523, unless upon order of a justice's court the money is directed to be deposited pursuant to 3-10-601.

History: En. 26-1523 by Sec. 14, Ch. 463, L. 1975; R.C.M. 1947, 26-1523(1); amd. Sec. 1, Ch. 255, L. 1993; amd. Sec. 10, Ch. 426, L. 1995; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 470, L. 2003; amd. Sec. 8, Ch. 284, L. 2011; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 331, L. 2021.