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Opinions – 2009 (Volume 53, Opinions 1-3)

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Volume & Opinion Number Opinion Held Date Issued
53-3 How does a governing body allocate hard rock mine trust account funds between the governing body and the elementary and high school districts in the county, once a triggering event as set forth in Mont. Code Ann. § 7-6-2225(2) occurs? 10/02/09
  1. Subject to Mont. Code Ann. § 15-10-420, a board of county commissioners may levy mills to support a county hospital district, even if the district is newly created and no mills have previously been levied for district purposes.
  2. For purposes of applying Mont. Code Ann. § 15-10-420 to a mill levy for a county hospital district under Mont. Code Ann. § 7-34- 2133, the “governmental entity” levying the tax is the county, not the district.
  3. Under Mont. Code Ann. § 15-10-420, county property taxes are limited by the number of mills required to raise the same amount of tax revenue as was raised in the immediately previous year, increased by (a) one-half of the average rate of inflation for the previous year, and (b) by any mills carried over from the previous year under Mont. Code Ann. § 15-10-420(1)(b). The amount of tax revenue raised in 1996, as provided in Mont. Code Ann. § 15-10- 420, is no longer the limiting factor.
  4. The Commissioners may provide funding for a hospital district from the general mill levy or from (a) mills levied under Mont. Code Ann. § 7-34-2133, so long as the total number of mills levied by the County under Mont. Code Ann. § 7-1-2133 and for all other purposes covered by § 420 stays within the cap provided by § 420; (b) from an additional mill levy amount approved by the voters under Mont. Code Ann. § 15-10-425; or (c) from bonds sold pursuant to Mont. Code Ann. § 7-34-2131 to defray the cost of “acquisition, furnishing, equipment, improvement, extension, and betterment of hospital facilities and to provide an adequate working capital for a new hospital.”
  5. Montana Code Annotated § 7-34-2133 does not obligate the county to fund the budget proposed by the county hospital district trustees without change.
  1. A municipality may be organized within the boundaries of a resort area or resort area district.
  2. The incorporation of a municipality within the boundaries of a resort area does not alter the boundaries of the area, exclude property that is within the boundaries of the newly created municipality from the application of the resort tax, or preclude the expenditure of the area’s resort tax revenue for expenses or projects within the municipality’s boundaries as provided by law.
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