Could the Oil Boom Bust Small Montana Towns? [Audio]
U.S. Attorney Michael Cotter spoke at a law conference in Glasgow on Monday in which he highlighted the dramatic increase in drug and violent crime in eastern Montana. KGVO News spoke with the Director of the Montana League of Cities, Alec Hansen about the issue. He explains why the Bakken boom is putting extra stress on small towns and points out that property taxes won’t generate enough revenue for those towns to provide the fundamental services they’ll need.
With a limited amount of funds at their disposal and workers pouring in by the thousands, Hansen fears that many towns will under-perform in basic functions like fire protection and security unless the Montana legislature provides infrastructure funding for the problem in it’s next session.