24.26.697 FACT FINDER
(1) Either party to a dispute may petition the board to initiate factfinding or, if it is apparent that matters in disagreement might be more readily settled if facts involved were determined and publicly known, the board may initiate factfinding in accordance with 39-31-308, MCA.
(2) Within three days of receipt of a petition for factfinding, the board shall submit a list of five qualified, disinterested persons to each of the parties to the dispute.
(3) Within five days of receipt of the list, the parties shall select a fact finder by having the petitioner strike two names and then the other party strike two names. The remaining name is that of the fact finder.
(4) The parties shall immediately notify the board of the name of the fact finder. The board shall notify the fact finder along with a request to immediately establish dates and places of hearings.
(5) Within 20 days from the date of hearing, the fact finder shall make written findings of fact and recommendations for resolution of the dispute. The findings shall be served on both parties and a copy sent to the board.
(6) The fact finder may request the board to make the report public five days after the parties are served with the findings.
(7) Fifteen days after the parties are served the board shall provide that the report is open to public inspection.
(8) When a party petitions the board to initiate factfinding, the cost of factfinding must be equally borne by the parties. The fact finder shall, within ten working days of the written findings, send a copy of the invoice to both parties on which they will be billed for one-half of the total. The parties shall pay directly to the fact finder within five days.
(9) When the board initiates factfinding, the cost of factfinding proceedings must be equally borne by the board and the parties concerned. The fact finder shall, within ten working days of the written findings, submit an invoice of the costs and fees to the board which shall send copies of the invoice to both parties on which they will be billed for one-third of the total. The parties shall pay the board within five days and the board shall forward the total amount to the fact finder.
History: 39-31-104, MCA; IMP, 39-31-309, MCA; NEW, Eff. 6/4/74; AMD, 1978 MAR p. 192, Eff. 2/24/78; AMD, 1993 MAR p. 3026, Eff. 1/1/94; AMD, 2014 MAR p. 969, Eff. 5/9/14.