by Evelyn Pyburn
The suit of the Heights County Water District against Yellowstone County and Pam Ellis has moved forward with another step in the process.
Pam Ellis has requested that the court issue a summary judgement about whether the District Board has the authority to remove Ellis from the board, as the county’s appointed representative.
To ask for a summary judgement is to ask the judge to make a decision about a case without a trial when no material facts are in dispute. It is to make a decision about the application of the law.
Ellis’ request follows that of Yellowstone County, about a month ago, also asking for a summary judgement.
A couple weeks before the County’s request, the County Water District asked the court to postpone oral arguments in the case from March 6 to May 15. The Water District’s attorney, Susan Swimley, made the request, to allow time to “resolve disputed discovery issues,” and to allow a bill in the state legislature to make its way through the process because it could render the case moot. The court set the date for April 4, by Judicial Court Judge Collette Davies.