Skip to content
Subscriber Only
Business
Economics

Montana Towns Struggle With Oil Boom Cost as Dollars Flee

Tractor-trailer trucks carrying oil, water and sand to drilling sites are lined up at one of two stoplights in Fairview, Montana, as the mayor tries to figure out how to squeeze more people into his town.

The prairie community straddles the state line with North Dakota and needs a new water tank, improvements to its sewage treatment plant and curbs and gutters. The price tag: $14.4 million -- five times the city’s $2.7 million budget.