U.S. CONGRESS – U.S. Senators Steve Daines and Jon Tester and Congressman Greg Gianforte today announced that the U.S. Department of the Treasury (Treasury) has agreed to settle the Powell County’s debt for the U.S. Coast Guard’s cleanup of the Roundhouse Site in 2014.
“This is great news for Powell County,” Daines said. “I made it one of my top priorities to help reduce the massive debt facing the folks and community of Powell County. Settling this debt means protecting critical services and infrastructure in and around the community. I’m very thankful to see the Trump administration act on my request to right this bureaucratic mess.”
“I’m glad to hear that the Treasury Department listened to our calls to settle this matter,” Tester said. “This is a victory against an overbearing bureaucratic process that was threatening funding for schools, hospitals, and roads in and around Deer Lodge and Ovando, and it shows that small communities acting in good faith can still stand up to the federal government.”
“This is great news for Powell County. Treasury’s decision lifts a huge burden from the shoulders of the county and its residents, and it safeguards funding for rural schools, hospitals, and roads,” Gianforte said. “After the county was unfairly burdened with this outrageous debt and after its leaders made good faith efforts to clean up the Roundhouse Site, I’m glad to see Treasury listened to us and settled this debt accordingly.”
In December 2019, Daines, Tester and Gianforte wrote a letter urging Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to accept Powell County’s settlement proposal of $200,000. The Department of Debt Management Service had billed Powell County $4.1 million for the U.S. Coast Guards cleanup of the Roundhouse Site in 2014.
In June of 2018, Daines, Tester and Gianforte wrote a letter to Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to come to a mutually acceptable resolution on the Powell County debt.