Blackfeet Housing Sues BIA over Failure to Maintain Storm Drains and Flood Damage

Here is the complaint in Blackfeet Housing v. United States (D. Mont.):

1 – Complaint

An excerpt:

9. During the winter of 2011, the Blackfeet Indian Reservation had significant snowfall. The streets in Browning were covered with snow, and huge snow banks were created from plowing. In June of 2011, Browning also had significant rainfall. Given the unusual amount of precipitation, Blackfeet Housing had many rental units with a significant amount of water in the basements. In order to address the magnitude of this problem, Blackfeet Housing sent an engineer to look at the homes and determine the reason for the flooded crawl spaces. He discovered that the storm drains were clogged, the water had nowhere to go, and as a result, the water was backing up into the homes. The water in some of the homes filled the entire crawl space. The result was significant damage to the structure of the unit.

10. Each year after the snow melt and spring storm, the neighborhood flooding will continue to increase in frequency, duration, and intensity until storm drain systems are cleaned and repaired.
11. The storm drain and catch basic cleaning and repair is now well beyond the scope of routine maintenance.

12. Repair of residence flood damages is well beyond the scope of routine Blackfeet Housing house maintenance.

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