Landowner didn’t abandon water rights, judge affirms in battle with 2 of Montana’s largest landowners

Landowner didn’t abandon water rights, judge affirms in battle with 2 of Montana’s largest landowners

News Type: State Source: Billings Gazette
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A central Montana landowner did not abandon his water rights, a state Water Court Judge has affirmed.

In June 2017, Water Master Ben Sudduth, of the Montana Water Court, ruled in Gene Klamert’s favor that he had not abandoned his right to use water on Flatwillow Creek. On appeal the decision was upheld.

“The Court finds the Master’s recommendations are based on substantial evidence,” wrote associate Montana Water Court Judge Douglas Ritter in his June 19 decision, noting it was not the court’s function to “substitute its own judgement for the trier of fact.”