Montana Department of Justice

Letters of Advice – 2006

Disclaimer: The Department of Justice expends considerable effort to ensure that the letters of advice appearing on our website are true copies of the originals on file in our office. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of a printed copy that you did not personally download from the website.

Subject Request Requestor Date Issued
Cities and Towns Does the Mayor of the City of Miles City possess the power to veto an objectionable part of a resolution containing the city’s annual budget, while approving the other parts of said resolution and budget? Noble, Jeffrey A.
City Attorney
Miles City
07/26/06
Deeds May a county clerk and recorder require a survey and plat in order to record a deed transferring title to a remainder that was created when the United States government obtained property for a highway right-of-way for a federal road or state highway? Bradshaw, Blaine C.
County Attorney
Granite
05/25/06
Fees
  1. Can the water adjudication fee under House Bill No. 22, enacted as Chapter 228, Laws of 2005, be legally imposed on an enrolled tribal member who holds a state-based water right put to beneficial use on fee land within the exterior boundaries of the reservation?
  2. If the fee is imposed and a tribal member declines to pay the fee, is the fee collectible under federal law?
  3. Does the fact that the described tribal member has intentionally chosen to participate in the state water adjudication process affect the analysis?
  4. Does the fact that the intentional participation enhances the value of the privately owned property affect the analysis?
Matthews, Gary
Speaker
House of Representatives
08/15/06
Fire Districts Does the phrase “majority of the tax paying freeholders” in Mont. Code Ann. § 7-33-2125(1)(a) refer to a majority of the total landowners, or to the majority of the land? Bradshaw, Blaine C.
County Attorney
Granite
07/20/06
Jurisdiction
  1. May a county charge a city (located within the county) for preparing and maintaining criminal justice information for persons committed to the county detention center at the request of a city police department in the course of enforcing state law?
  2. May a county refuse to transport persons committed to the county detention center under state law at the request of a city court judge?
Van Buskirk, Mary
City Attorney
Havre
07/20/06
Local Government Study Commissions Does responsibility for developing the new five district apportionment plan for Ravalli County rest with the Local Government Study Commission or the existing three-member Board of County Commissioners? Corn, George
County Attorney
Ravalli
11/17/06
Motor Vehicles Pursuant to Mont. Code Ann. § 61-6-303(9), motor vehicles that are owned and registered by non-residents which are in compliance with said person’s home state’s motor vehicle liability insurance requirements are exempt from the provisions of § 61-6-301 (which generally require Montana drivers to maintain such insurance coverage). Should non-resident drivers be required to maintain such insurance coverage while driving in Montana if their home state’s laws do not require them to do so once they leave their home state to avoid being convicted of violating this statute? Noble, Jeffrey A.
County Attorney
Powder River
05/04/06
Motor Vehicles Does a driver need to obtain insurance coverage for a vehicle which is parked on private property (and the owner is unsure as to when it will next be operated on public roads) when he attempts to reinstate his registration and license plates under Mont. Code Ann. § 61-6-304(2) following his second conviction of a violation of § 61-6-301? Noble, Jeffrey A.
County Attorney
Powder River
05/04/06
Motor Vehicles After issuing a citation to a driver for operating a motor vehicle without a policy of liability insurance in effect in violation of Mont. Code Ann. § 61-6-301, can the law enforcement officer that issued the citation instruct the driver to park that vehicle in a proper spot and not move it until proof of liability insurance is in effect? Further, can said officer take any further action to ensure that vehicle is not driven? Noble, Jeffrey A.
City Prosecutor
Miles City
05/04/06
School Districts Several questions concerning the effect of school district unification. Wilson, Valerie
County Attorney
Jefferson
01/19/06
Statutory Construction Does the cancellation of a recorded notice of trustee sale executed in conformance with Mont. Code Ann. § 71-1-312 constitute a conveyance of an interest in real property that requires a legal description be included as a prerequisite to recording pursuant to Mont. Code Ann. § 7-4-2636? Schwarz, Daniel L.
Chief Deputy County Attorney
Yellowstone
09/07/06
Statutory Construction
  1. Is the prohibition on the use of public resources as set forth in Mont. Code Ann. § 2-2-121, and in particular subsection (3) (as it relates to the passage of a ballot initiative) applicable to the Montana Association of Counties (MACo) because the association is partially funded with dues paid with public funds by member counties, as authorized in Mont. Code Ann. § 7-5-2141?
  2. Is MACo bound by the provisions of § 2-2-101 through -144 of the Montana Code of Ethics?
  3. Can MACo make expenditures or contributions in connection with ballot initiatives, or voice its support of or opposition to ballot initiatives?
  4. Does a member of the Hill County Commission violate Mont. Code Ann. 2-2-121(3) by authorizing the payment of dues in accordant with Mont. Code Ann. 7-5-2131, or by serving as an officer of the association, if the association uses any part of the dues paid to solicit support or opposition to the passage of a ballot initiative? Is this a violation of the use of public resources, or do the public funds used to pay dues for membership in the association lose their identity as public money when transferred to the association?
Bessette, Kathy
County Commission Chairman
Hill
09/27/06
Statutory Construction Several questions regarding the proper interpretation of Mont. Code Ann. § 76-1-221(d). Bell, Kenneth S.
City Attorney
Hamilton
11/03/06
Subdivisions Do Broadwater County Commissioners have any discretion under Mont. Code Ann. § 76-3-621(3)(a) to impose a park dedication requirement for minor subdivisions? Flynn, John T.
County Attorney
Broadwater
03/02/06

ago-lsd

Attorney General's Office & Legal Services Division

The Attorney General’s Office, headed by Attorney General Tim Fox, and the Legal Services Division function as the lawyers for the State of Montana. The attorneys in the Office have expertise in a wide range of legal topics and handle a broad range of legal cases involving the State of Montana and its people.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Children’s Justice Bureau

The Children’s Justice Bureau is an agency-wide initiative at the Montana Department of Justice dedicated to IMPROVING how we respond to child victims, DEVELOPING state-of-the-art approaches by keeping up with the newest research and, most importantly, HELPING child victims recover and move on with their lives.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Division of Criminal Investigation

The Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) at the Montana Department of Justice is involved in many aspects of Montana law enforcement and is integral to the Department dciof Justice’s mission of promoting public safety.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Forensic Science Division & State Crime Lab

The mission of the Montana Forensic Science Division is to use operationally efficient and financially responsible practices as the laboratory provides accurate, objective, and timely forensic analyses to the criminal justice community in order to maximize value to the citizens of Montana.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Missing Persons Clearinghouse

The Missing Children Act of 1985 established a Montana Missing Persons Clearinghouse within the Department of Justice. In March 2008, the department implemented a searchable online database that, for the first time, is updated in real time and includes any photos provided by law enforcement.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Office of Victim Services

The goal of the Office of Victim Services is to provide tools and information to help crime victims recover from their experience and provide them with a range of services available. The criminal justice system can be confusing and intimidating for victims. To assist them as they go through the justice system, the Office of Victim Service is available to answer any questions they may have.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Central Services Division

The Montana Department of Justice’s Central Services Division provides financial and human resources support for the department. We make sure that everything works for the people Working for Justice. If you’re interested in a rewarding career helping protect the rights and safety of all Montanans, we invite you to join our team of over 800 dedicated employees working across the state.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Justice Information Technology Services Division

Our Justice Information Technology Services Division (JITSD) provides vital Information Technology (IT) infrastructure upon which Montanans and lojitsdcal and state law enforcement agencies rely for timely, accurate information. JITSD manages the IT systems, services, and interfaces to support nearly 800 DOJ employees, 325 statewide county motor vehicle system users, and over 3,000 Criminal Justice Information Network (CJIN) users across the state.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Montana Highway Patrol

Montana is rich in natural beauty and history. From Glacier Park in the west to Makoshika Park in the east, the men and women of the Montana Highway Patrol are working hard to make your travels safe and enjoyable. The Highway Patrol’s core values are “Service, Integrity and Respect.” These values are reflected in our commitment to public safety through diligent and fair enforcement of our traffic codes.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Montana Law Enforcement Academy

The Montana Law Enforcement Academy is the premier law enforcement and public safety educational and training institution for state, county, city and tribal officers throughout the state. The Academy offers entry-level programs referred to as Basic Programs and advanced training through an array of Professional Development Programs.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Public Safety Officer Standards & Training

The Council was formed in 2007 under 2-15-2029, MCA as an independent Quasi-judicial board. And as allowed by statute the Council adopted Administrative Rules in order to implement the provisions of Title 44, chapter 4, part 4, MCA. Per 44-4-403, MCA the Council is required to set employment and training standards for all Public Safety Officers as defined in 44-4-401, MCA and in addition the Council shall provide for the certification or recertification of public safety officers and for the suspension or revocation of certification of public safety officers.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Gambling Control Division

Through the Gambling Control Division, the Department of Justice regulates all forms of gambling in Montana, except for the Montana Lottery and horse racing. The legislature has charged the division with maintaining a uniform regulatory climate that is fair and free of corrupt influences. The division is also responsible for collecting gambling revenue for state and local governments.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Motor Vehicle Division

The mission of the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) is to identify and promote efficient, cost-effective programs that benefit the interests, safety, and well-being of Montana citizens through licensing, registering, and regulating the motoring activities of the public. The MVD continuously strives for excellence in customer service. Streamlining the way we do business has allowed us to improve our efficiency and make our services more convenient for our customers.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Natural Resource Damage Program

The Natural Resource Damage Program (NRDP) was created in 1990 to prepare the state’s lawsuit against the Atlantic Richfield Co. (ARCO) for injuries to the natural resources in the Upper Clark Fork River Basin (UCFRB). Decades of mining and mineral processing operations in and around Butte and Anaconda released substantial quantities of hazardous substances into the Upper Clark Fork River Basin between Butte and Milltown. These hazardous substances extensively degraded the area’s natural resources.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Office of Consumer Protection

Enforce consumer laws designed to protect the consumer from unfair or deceptive business practices. Enforce statutes relating to telephone solicitation and telemarketing. Provide information to consumers about their basic rights under consumer laws. Assist consumers by distributing consumer education materials including scam and consumer alerts. Investigate false, misleading, or deceptive trade practices.

Enter Division
ago-lsd

Human Trafficking

The Montana Department of Justice has a continued commitment to victims of human trafficking. In partnership with federal authorities, our agency plays a key role in the investigation, enforcement, and prosecution of crimes related to human trafficking in Montana. This form of modern day slavery does happen here in Big Sky Country.

Enter
ago-lsd

Prescription Drug Abuse Awareness Program

Montana’s deadliest drugs aren’t made in secret labs and they don’t always come from dealers on the corner. They’re in our own medicine cabinets. Each year, prescription drug abuse contributes to the deaths of more than 300 Montanans — making prescription drug abuse 15 times more deadly than meth, heroin and cocaine combined. Our kids report the third-highest rate of prescription drug abuse in the country and more than half of them say prescription drugs are easier to get than street drugs.

Enter
ago-lsd

Safe in Your Space

When it comes to embracing new technology, kids have rapidly outpaced their parents and teachers. By their early school years, many children are already more comfortable on the Internet than their parents. But just because children are smart enough to know how to navigate the Internet, doesn’t mean they have the experience to make good decisions about some of the possibilities they may face online.

Enter
ago-lsd

Montana Sexual or Violent Offender Registry

Created by the Montana Department of Justice in 1989, the Sexual or Violent Offender Registry is a valuable resource for Montanans to protect their families against sexual or violent offenders.

Enter
ago-lsd

Montana 24/7 Sobriety Program

Drinking and driving has been a chronic – and deadly — problem on Montana’s roadways for decades. In 2008, Montana was ranked as the deadliest state in the nation when it came to per capita DUI-related traffic fatalities.

Enter
ago-lsd

Work for Justice

Everyday at The Montana Department of Justice, our employees are dedicated to ensuring the well-being and rights of the people of our great state. We’re passionate about what we do because it’s more than a job or a career. It’s about who we are as people. If this sounds like you, your unique experiences, knowledge, and values may be just what the Montana Department of Justice is looking for and needs. In return we can offer a culture that promotes fairness and growth opportunities.

Enter