Elk-kill proposal advances in Montana

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BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — State wildlife officials are reviving a plan to issue elk-kill permits to landowners in parts of southern Montana to reduce the spread of disease to cattle.

Fish, Wildlife and Parks commissioners on Thursday gave initial approval to the plan for the 2014-2015 season. It would allow up to 250 elk to be taken by permitted landowners and by hunters during special "dispersal" hunts.

The aim is to keep infected elk away from cattle to prevent the spread of the disease brucellosis.

A final vote is expected in October.

Commissioners agreed not to issue any of the permits last season after two hunting groups filed a lawsuit in May.

The lawsuit from the Skyline Sportsmen's Association and the Anaconda Sportsmen's Club remains pending before state District Judge Mike Menahan in Helena.

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