Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Montana Passes Horse Slaughterhouse Protection Measure

Montana has passed a law making it difficult to challenge the building of a horse slaughtering facility in that state. The last such facility in the US closed in 2007. This bill specifically makes for groups that might oppose it to use the court system to do so. From the bill, which you can read here:
Section 2. Judicial review of equine slaughter or processing facilities -- surety bond -- attorney fees -- venue. (1) (a) If an action is filed in district court to challenge the issuance of a license, permit, certificate, or other approval for an equine slaughter or processing facility pursuant to Title 75 or Title 81, chapter 9, the court shall require a surety bond of the person filing the action. The bond must be set at an amount representing 20% of the estimated cost of building the facility or the operational costs of an existing facility.

(b) The bonding requirements of this subsection (1) do not apply to an indigent person.

(2) If the bond required under subsection (1) is not paid within 30 days of the filing of the action, the action must be dismissed.
That's right, so anyone that that challenges the building of such a facility will have to have a bond at 20% of the value of said facility.

2 comments:

Andrew said...

MBarky,

What a ridiculous piece of legislation!

The concept of requiring parties to put up some form of deposit or bond prior to the commencement of legal action is not new.

Broadly speaking, the purpose behind these types of requirements is twofold:

(a) to discourage frivolous forms of action; and

(b)to prevent the type of situation whereby plaintiffs whose actions are not successful are unable to meet their requirements in terms of paying for the legal costs of the defense, thereby causing the defendant to incur financial loss despite their success in defending their case.

For these reasons, use of these types of requirements can be justified in some cases.

Naturally, however, the downside of these types of requirements is that they make it extremely difficult for parties with legitimate complaints to pursue such complaints through the legal system, and can result in justice being denied merely due to the inability of a party to meet these requirements.

In this case, the requirement that you describe is just plain ludicrous, and there are much better ways to discourage frivolous complaints.

Patty said...

The American Way: Liberty and justice for all who CAN AFFORD IT!!!
This is disgusting.