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'Capitol Talk': Daines VS. Protesters, Vote By Mail, Remembering Chief Justice Gray

Sen. Daines vs. protesters; the new national attack ad against Sen. Tester; state GOP chairman pushes to block the mail-ballot election for Ryan Zinke's replacement; opposition to Gianforte as the Republican nominee in the upcoming special election; and former Chief Justice Karla Gray's legacy, this week on "Capitol Talk."

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Threshold Episode 04: Tatanka Oyate

In episode four of Threshold, we meet Robbie Magnan of the Fort Peck Tribes. He believes his community can prosper in the future by reconnecting with their roots as the Tatanka Oyate — the buffalo people. Magnan has built a quarantine facility that could be an alternative to the Yellowstone bison slaughter, but right now it sits empty while more than a thousand bison are being culled from the herd. Why? We'll learn more about Magnan's vision for bison restoration, and investigate why some people are opposed to it.

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MTPR Features

Marc Samsom

Feel Better When You Have A Sore Throat: Dr. Starbuck Explains

Hi! I’m Dr. Jamison Starbuck, a naturopathic family physician. I’m here today to give you health tips on a painful ailment: sore throats. Doctors call sore throats ‘pharyngitis.’ That’s because the back of the throat is called the pharynx, P-H-A-R-Y-N-X, and ‘itis’ means something is inflamed. So if you have pharyngitis, you have a throat that is sore and swollen and hurts.

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Bring your lunch to the Myrna Loy Center in Helena and chat with MTPR station manager Ray Ekness and program director Michael Marsolek.  Please come, ask questions and give us your advice and suggestions about the station. Ray and Michael will also let you know what projects MTPR has in the pipeline.

Today we're celebrating 52 years of Montana Public Radio! For our birthday wish this year, we're asking you to share your most memorable "driveway moment." Tell us about a time when you just couldn't pull yourself away from the radio. Don't have a "driveway moment?" Tell us why public radio matters to you.

Each season, Threshold podcast explores one story from the natural world, and what it says about us. Season one focuses on the American bison. Dig into the history of the American bison, from their arrival in North America, to current controversies surrounding their management today. 

Subscribe to Threshold podcast now via iTunes, and most other podcast apps, or using your own player: http://thresholdpodcast.libsyn.com/rss. You can also listen online at http://www.thresholdpodcast.org

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'The Food Guys' Recommend A Sugar Substitute

5 hours ago
Edgar 181

Jon discusses the sugar alcohol, erythritol, which is virtually calorie-free and doesn't cause as large a blood sugar spike as sucrose or high-fructose corn syrup.

Sen. Daines vs. protesters; the new national attack ad against Sen. Tester; state GOP chairman pushes to block the mail-ballot election for Ryan Zinke's replacement; opposition to Gianforte as the Republican nominee in the upcoming special election; and former Chief Justice Karla Gray's legacy, this week on "Capitol Talk."

Solar panel installation.
Wayne National Forest (CC-BY-2)

After supporters of the so-called Solar Jobs and Energy Freedom Act rallied in the state Capitol yesterday in support of more solar energy development, legislation to do so stalled in committee today on a tie vote.

House Bill 504 failed to get enough votes to move out of the House Energy Technology and Federal Relations committee.

The sign outside the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices Office.
Steve Jess

State legislative leaders are no longer taking applications for the job of Montana's top political cop. They've now started the process of selecting the next commissioner of political practices.

In a meeting this morning, four Montana House and Senate leaders discussed  how to move forward in replacing current Political Practices Commissioner Jonathan Motl, whose term ended in January.

The confirmation of Montana’s at-large Republican Congressman Ryan Zinke to head the Interior Department could come as soon as next week. Democrat Dan West says he's best prepared to replace Zinke and navigate Washington D.C.'s turbulent waters.

Dan West loves kayaking. The Missoula native loves it so much he used to be a professional kayak instructor. So perhaps it's only natural that he uses the sport in a new campaign video that's circulating on the internet. Decked out in a dry top and paddling in an ice cold Montana river, West declares:

Recruiters At UM Say They're Looking For Talent And Ready To Hire
flickr user Neetal Parekh (CC-BY-NC-2)

Recruiters representing over 70 employers from across the region visited the University of Montana this week. They were interviewing students for jobs and internships. According to Steve Arveschoug of Big Sky Economic Development, there’s no shortage of good jobs available right now in the Billings area.

Accusations of voter suppression are already flying ahead of Montana's anticipated special election to fill Ryan Zinke's seat in Congress.
Josh Burnham

Accusations of voter suppression are already flying ahead of Montana's anticipated special election. That would be held after Congressman Ryan Zinke vacates his seat, pending Senate confirmation of his appointment to become secretary of the interior.

"I grew up in Tacoma, a port city on Puget Sound," writes poet, essayist and co-owner of Missoula's Montgomery Distillery, Jenny Montgomery. "We lived on Puyallup Indian reservation land, but there were few signs that this was so. Our neighborhood overlooked ancient salmon fishing waters but was completely inhabited by whites.  There were no Native kids among us at school yet our mascot was the Warrior—a childlike, cartoon brave who wore a single feather on his head and a floppy loincloth.

Lawmakers rejected a bill aiming to reform how state prisons put people with mental illnesses in solitary confinement.
Flickr user, BohemianDolls (cc-by-2.0)

In a close vote this morning, lawmakers rejected a bill aiming to reform how state prisons put people with mental illnesses in solitary confinement. The bill introduced by Roger Webb, a Billings Republican, would have outlawed the use of solitary confinement for prisoners with mental illness, except in a few situations.

Bison at the Stephens Creek Capture facility north of Yellowstone Park in 2015.
Jim Peaco (PD)

On Monday the Bozeman Daily Chronicle's Michael Wright reported that more than 570 Yellowstone National Park bison have been killed so far this winter. The Park is trying to reduce the size of its bison herd from an estimated 5,500 animals to about 3,000.

The annual slaughter happens as part of compromise between the Park Service and State of Montana, which says bison numbers need to be controlled to prevent the spread of the disease brucellosis to cattle. It's controversial, and there is an alternative.

Joining us now to talk about it is Amy Martin, who spent the last year reporting on bison for her podcast: Threshold.

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NPR News

Officials in Los Angeles have asked Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents working in the city not to identify themselves as police.

In a letter addressed to the ICE deputy field office director who handles immigration enforcement, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, City Attorney Mike Feuer, and president of the city council Herb Wesson wrote:

As President Trump prepares a new executive order on vetting refugees and immigrants, one idea keeps cropping up: checking the social media accounts of those coming to the U.S.

In fact, such a program was begun under the Obama administration more than a year ago on a limited basis and is likely to be expanded. But social media vetting is a heavy lift, and it's too early to tell how effective it will be.

Bounding Baby Bongo Born

10 hours ago

The Los Angeles Zoo has officially announced its newest addition: a baby bongo.

Eastern bongos are striped forest antelopes, with large ears and horns. They are found in the wild in East Africa and are critically endangered according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, which maintains the so-called red list of species facing extinction.

Only 75 to 140 wild bongos are thought to still live in Kenya.

The newly appointed Republican chairman of the Federal Communications Commission is moving to scale back the implementation of sweeping privacy rules for Internet providers passed last year.

Chairman Ajit Pai on Friday asked the FCC to hit pause on the rollout of one part of those rules that was scheduled to go into effect next week. This marks the latest in his efforts to roll back his predecessor's regulatory moves.

The video of about a dozen hefty Siberian tigers chasing and batting a flying drone from the sky seemed a lighthearted reprieve from the more serious news of the day. But since sharing the footage, we've become aware that it may conceal a darker story.

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