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Montana Standard Editor David McCumber, Butte
Mike Albans

David McCumber, the editor of the Montana Standard in Butte, discusses three bills that cumulatively could make it more dangerous to drive in the state. He also discusses what the EPA nomination of Scott Pruitt by President-elect Donald Trump could mean for Montana. 

Montana Capitol, Helena
Mike Albans

Today, a so-called Bill of Rights for kids in foster care and the parents that take care of them got its first hearing in the state legislature. Although guidelines outlining those rights already exist now, they’re just administrative policy and not a part of state law.

Local government officials said the state is unfairly shifting the cost of housing the state’s prisoners to their taxpayers.  They are asking lawmakers to restore the payments to the actual costs

The root of the problem, said Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry is the sheer number of state inmates.


A previous women's political rally in Helena
Courtesy of Women's March On Montana

This Saturday organizers are expecting almost 4,000 people from across the state to gather in Helena for the Women’s March on Montana — an event organized in tandem with the national march happening on the same day in Washington, DC.

University of Montana President Sheila Stearns
Courtesy the University of Montana

University of Montana President Sheila Stearns presented her mid-year update to faculty and staff today. The address to the standing-room-only crowd of about 300 was peppered with optimistic messages that the university’s best days are ahead of it.

But it also contained a sobering reality check.

Utility companies say homeowners' solar panels can end up being subsidized by other customers.
(PD)

Legislation introduced Wednesday in the Montana House would require officials to study how renewable energy generators, like solar panels, impact the utility bills of the people who don’t have them. 

Solar panels can help trim down the utility bill of homeowners, but some say it shifts that cost onto other utility consumers who don’t have personal energy generators on their home. There’s no consensus on that.

Crown of the Continent Choir singing "Dear Mr. President."
Nicky Ouellet

It’s been a rough few weeks for many people living in the Flathead Valley. First, several families and businesses faced a barrage of hate-filled, anti-Semitic phone calls and messages. Then, a group of neo-Nazis threatened an armed march against the city of Whitefish.

Montana Capitol dome
William Marcus

Today, Montana Senators voted unanimously in support of a bill to change the state's legal definition of rape, removing the requirement of force for a perpetrator to be found guilty.

National Bison Range
Josh Burnham-cc-by-2.0

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced it’s assessing future management plans for the National Bison Range, including transferring control to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT).

The Protect Montana Kids Commission listening to stories of child abuse, abandonment and neglect
Corin Cates-Carney

Montana’s child protection system is in dire straits. The number of kids entering foster care has skyrocketed and caseworkers are overwhelmed. Last year, 14 children died across the state despite reports of abuse being made to authorities.

A house bill set to be heard on Thursday morning aims to help.

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