Montana News

Politics Week in Review
1:24 pm
Fri July 4, 2014

Contraceptives, Campaign Finance And Citizen Initiatives

Montana politicians and interest groups were divided along party lines over this week's U.S. Supreme Court decision concerning the Affordable Care Act's birth control coverage mandate. In the Hobby Lobby case, the Supreme Court ruled that closely-held private corporations do not have to provide birth control as mandated by the Affordable Care Act, if the corporations have religious objections to birth control.

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Vietnam Veterans of Northwest Montana
10:00 am
Fri July 4, 2014

Vietnam veterans helping others “come out of the woods”

Members of the 1087, Northwest Montana Chapter of the Vietnam Veterans of America. President John Burgess on the far left.
Credit Katrin Frye

On the hill outside a Somers home a group of men and one woman are working on a 1968 Kaiser military truck.

“The frame underneath; you can see the line of green is going to cross underneath there- that’ll be OD Green. And then the frame is going to be black,” Dale Cordell served in the Army in Vietnam between 1970 and 1971. Cordell is a member of the recently formed Chapter 1087 of the Vietnam Veterans.

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Flathead Work Force - Contractors
2:59 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Building picks up in the Flathead, but Bakken boom still a big draw

The boom surrounding the Baaken oil fields remains draw for Flathead area workers and businesses.
Credit Dan Boyce

Businesses are hiring and construction across the greater Flathead has been picking up, but many are still heading east and sending money home. Kramer Enterprises Incorporated of Evergreen, east of Kalispell is one of those companies. President and CEO Terry Kramer said his company handles commercial and heavy industrial projects mainly, as well as large residential or multi-use projects.

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Hobby Lobby ruling
11:59 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Montana feedback to Hobby Lobby decision

Martha Stahl
Credit Edward O'Brien

A sharply divided Supreme Court ruled this week that some companies with religious objections can avoid the contraceptives requirement in President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. That marks the first time the high court has declared that businesses can hold religious views under federal law.
 
     The justices' 5-4 decision means the Obama administration must search for a different way of providing free contraception to women who are covered under the health insurance plans of objecting companies, such as Hobby Lobby.

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Supreme Court Union Fees
3:07 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

S.E.I.U: Supreme Court union decision to have no impact in Montana

The Supreme Court dealt a blow to public sector unions today, ruling that thousands of home health care workers in Illinois cannot be required to pay fees that help cover a union's costs of collective bargaining.

In a 5-4 split the justices said the practice violates the First Amendment rights of non-members who disagree with the positions that unions take.

According to one regional union rep, the decision is expected to have no impact here in Montana.

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Montana News
3:53 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Closed primaries, V.A. craziness and campaign chicanery

Over the weekend, Montana Republicans held their platform convention in Billings.  Chuck Johnson of Lee Newspapers reports that Republicans, "Irked at what they believe is Democrats interfering in their primary elections. . . called for closing their primaries and allowing only registered Republicans to vote in them."  Delegates also supported a resolution to turn over federal public lands to the state.

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Tester's Veterans' Listening Tour
2:54 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

Veterans ask Tester to "work on crazy for us" with the VA

Credit Steve Corey/Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevecorey/6335951002/

You could say service is a tradition in Madeline Steeley’s family. She served in the US Air Force.

“Both of my daughters went into the Marine Corps, one just came out after 13 years, the other, after five. Both, heavily disabled. I have a son-in-law that came out of the Marine Corps, another son-in-law that came out of the Navy. My daughters’ father retired after 20 years Air Force. So, I have quite a bit of experience with the military,” Steeley said.

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Exchange student shooting
12:01 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

Missoula judge scolds Kaarma attorney

Markus Kaarma (L) and lead attorney Paul Ryan (R)
Credit Edward O'Brien

Missoula County District Court Judge Ed McLean today laid it out in no uncertain terms  to Markus Kaarma's lead attorney, Paul Ryan:

"I don't want any playing to the public. We have serious business at hand and it's not the time to run  a public relations campaign, so knock it off."

McLean  was referring to the announcement that tomorrow morning, in Missoula's Caras Park, Ryan's law firm would host a live screening of the World Cup soccer match between the United States and Germany.

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NWS River Warning
9:58 am
Fri June 20, 2014

High, fast, muddy rivers expected through the weekend

Rock slide above the Loop on the Going to the Sun Highway in Glacier National Park. Recent wet weather caused slides and some flooding in Glacier Park.
Credit flickr/GlacierNPS

Record breaking rains in the Flathead keep the rivers high and caused the National Weather Service to call for caution. The National Weather Service is calling for the clearing skies of Thursday to continue over the next couple of days with a high pressure system coming in, and temperatures moving up from the 40’s of mid-week, to the 80’s. However, it is also calling for rivers and streams to remain high and muddy through the weekend with the greatest concern the North, Middle, and main stems of the Flathead River.

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Plane Crash
11:09 am
Wed June 18, 2014

Twin-engine plane crashes near Lost Trail ski lodge

Grumman G-21
Credit wikimedia commons

One person is confirmed dead after a plane crashed yesterday in the parking lot of Lost Trail Powder Mountain on Highway 93 south at the Montana/Idaho border. Ravalli County Undersheriff, Steve Holton,  says Ravalli County dispatch began receiving calls about the crash shortly after 5:00 yesterday afternoon. Preliminary information suggests the plane was a Grumman G-21, an amphibious twin engine aircraft.

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