- Associated Press - Monday, January 22, 2018

POLSON, Mont. (AP) - A business coalition is asking a judge to stop state officials from imposing a fee on assets of Montana’s workers’ compensation fund to plug a budget gap

The suit filed Monday in state District Court in Lake County says employers pay into the fund to make sure injured workers get medical coverage and state officials can’t take the money for Montana’s general fund.

Plaintiffs include several small businesses, the Montana Roofing Contractors Association and the National Federation of Independent Businesses,

Lawmakers recently approved a 3 percent management fee on state fund assets above $1 billion. The fee is intended to raise nearly $30 million over two years to help address a projected $227 million budget deficit.

The fund’s board of directors initially challenged the fee but later withdrew their lawsuit.

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