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United States v. Atlantic Richfield Co.

ELR Citation: 46 ELR 20192
Nos. CV-89-39-BU-SHE, (D. Mont., 12/07/2016) (Haddon, J.)

A district court denied as untimely a newspaper’s motion to intervene in a case involving a 27-year-old CERCLA action. The newspaper claimed it had, under state law, the right to information related to confidential settlement negotiations that took place between the U.S. government and a mining company in 1999 concerning contamination at the Silver Creek/Butte site in Montana. But the court denied the motion because there was an unreasonable 13-year delay in the filing. Furthermore, the newspaper cannot articulate any justification for the delay. The court also determined that the challenge was without merit, as “[a]mple good cause exists to keep the settlement negotiations confidential.”