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The Latest: Resort owner in liquor dispute is Bullock donor

June 25, 2019

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — The Latest on a settlement between Montana and the Yellowstone Club resort (all times local):

12:40 p.m.

The owner of the Yellowstone Club and co-owner of three of the four liquor licenses the Montana Department of Revenue threatened to revoke from the ultra-exclusive resort’s bars and restaurants is a campaign donor to Gov. Steve Bullock.

Representatives for Bullock and the Yellowstone Club said Tuesday that CrossHarbor Capital co-founder and managing partner Sam Byrne’s past donations were not a factor in the state agency’s decision to settle allegations that club officials sold and stored alcohol at unlicensed locations.

Yellowstone Club officials agreed to a $370,000 settlement that allows the resort to keep its liquor licenses and continue the application process for a new one.

Records show Byrne donated a total of $31,152 to Bullock’s Big Sky Values political-action committee in 2017 and 2018. He and his wife also donated to Bullock’s 2012 and 2016 gubernatorial campaigns.

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10:20 p.m.

A Montana resort has agreed to pay $370,000 to the state after revenue officials threatened to pull its liquor licenses.

The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reported Monday that Yellowstone Club bars and restaurants agreed to the fine to keep four liquor licenses and receive an additional license.

Yellowstone Club’s Base Lodge Lounge, Timberline, H&K Spirits, and Rainbow Lodge Lounge told the Montana Department of Revenue they sold and stored alcohol at unlicensed locations.

Officials seized 2,979 bottles of liquor, 3,108 bottles of wine, 2,954 bottles and cans of beer, and 31 beer kegs at the resort and in warehouses in January and February.

The state will suspend each bar and restaurant from serving alcohol for seven to 20 days at the 24 square-mile (62 square-kilometer) private resort in southwest Montana.

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