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State agencies have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars defending laws passed by the 2021 Legislature in court. Gov. Greg Gianforte wants an additional $2.6 million to bolster the Montana Department of Justice’s legal defense.

The request is for $1.3 million dollars in new funding for the department’s legal services division each year in 2024 and 2025. One million would go specifically to litigation funding, including trial costs and attorney fees, while the rest would pay for three new civil attorneys.

The request marks a 35% increase in the budget for the justice department’s legal services division from the previous two years and comes as courts continue to litigate dozens of laws passed by the 2021 Legislature.


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