I think Mr. Krueger is trying desperately to disassociate himself from the fact there would be no need to make the statement “I do not believe in weaponizing zoning to provide an after-the-fact harpoon to state-approved use of private property.”
This whole mess could have and should have been denied when it was presented to our commissioners; there was no need to get the DNRC involved. It was wrong for the commissioners to agree to Mr. Weaver’s request without having done the following:
1. Presenting the request in the local newspaper.
2. Getting some input from other areas that have experienced the impact of a similar development.
3. Asking what would be a reasonable amount of water one landowner has the right to extract.
4. Asking what would the impact be on the entire area.
I have had many conversations with people that have the opinion “you can’t tell someone what he/she can and cannot do with his/her own property.” Mr. Weaver’s property has boundaries. The water he would like to extract does not share those boundaries. He would be extracting and selling something that does not belong to him. Nobody is going to BS me into thinking they know what effect this plant is going to have on the aquifer in the long run. We will learn this after the fact.
For the commissioners to agree to this request with no reasonable restrictions on the amount of water being taken is absolutely INSANE.
This is how I see the outcome of this whole mess:
Scenario #1: Mr. Weaver has dotted every “i” and crossed ever “t” and jumped through every hoop asked of him. He has spent thousands of dollars already on a well, new building and thousands more on bottling equipment only to be told you cannot do what we have told you was OK, sorry. (HUGE LAWSUIT)
Scenario #2: Mr. Weaver is bottling water 24/7, sending it to who knows where. The aquifer cannot sustain normal levels. Wells all over have to be drilled deeper (still no guarantees). (MEGA LAWSUIT)
Scenario #3: The commissioners will blame the DNRC; the DNRC will say we were only supporting the request from your commissioners. Now the coup de grace. Call from local landowner to commissioners. I hope you made all your paperwork on the new water-bottling plant in duplicate because I will be needing copies of all of it including everything on the discharging of the wastewater; because my property is also bordering the Flathead River. The geographical location of my plant will be a couple of miles southeast of the existing plant. REQUEST DENIED. (ARMAGEDON LAWSUIT)
Who is going to pay for all of this? Sure as hell won’t be our esteemed commissioners. (TAXPAYERS)
Oftedahl is a resident of Kalispell.