HELENA, Mont. -

The Montana Supreme Court has upheld a state law to reappraise residential properties every six years, even when values decline.
    
The justices reversed a lower judge's ruling that the six-year cycle violated a Gallatin County subdivision developer's equal-protection rights.
    
State law requires the Revenue Department to revalue properties every six years to determine property taxes.
    
Covenant Investments Inc. sued after its property values declined by several million dollars after a previous reappraisal.
    
District Judge Holly Brown ruled the department's failure to conduct mid-cycle evaluations causes some taxpayers to pay a disproportionate share of taxes.
    
Lee Newspapers of Montana reports Justice Brian Morris wrote last week's 5-0 decision overturning Brown.
    
He says Covenant's right to equal protection was not violated and Brown's ruling amounted to an improper exercise of legislative power.