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Great Falls eyes deal to sever ties with power co-op

   GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) -- City officials in Great Falls have reached a
tentative agreement to extricate the city from ties with a bankrupt Montana
power cooperative.
   The Great Falls Tribune reports that city officials on Friday agreed to pay
$3.25 million to Southern Montana Electric Generation and Transmission
   Southern Montana is composed of five rural cooperatives and the city of Great
Falls that in turn provide power to more than 50,000 Montana residents. It filed
for bankruptcy in 2011.
   City Manager Greg Doyon says the agreement calls for a first payment of $2.5
million by June 30 and a final payment of $750,000 due Dec. 31.
   He says the city will have to tighten its belt, but it's too soon to tell if layoffs will result.
   Information from: Great Falls Tribune
   AP-WF-04-27-13 1824GMT

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