Montana News

Affordable Care Act
4:11 pm
Sat November 16, 2013

Insurance companies, commissioner examining options following ObamaCare announcement

About 5,000 health insurance plans from PacificSource set to be cancelled are eligible for one more year if the company decides to extend them.
Credit Dan Boyce

Montana Insurance companies are looking over their options after President Obama’s Thursday announcement regarding the Affordable Care Act. The President said some insurance plans about to be cancelled for not following the new healthcare law will be allowed to continue for one more year.

Montana’s Insurance commissioner said the announcement throws years of planning for ObamaCare into a tailspin.

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Black Footed Ferret
1:57 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

Ferret recovery is tricky. Is it worth it?

Credit U.S Fish and Wildlife Service

State wildlife commissioners have approved the release of up to 20 black-footed ferrets in central Montana to prevent the loss of a struggling population of the highly-endangered prairie animal.

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Search and Rescue
11:57 am
Fri November 15, 2013

Philanthropy to the (search and) rescue

Jordan White of Two Bear Air stands next to the organizations new Bell 429 rescue helicopter.
Credit Katrin Frye

It took private investment of more than $10-million to create Two Bear Air, a dedicated search and rescue air support service in the Flathead.

Former Flathead County Undersheriff Jordan White teamed up with Whitefish philanthropist Mike Goguen to create the non-profit. Goguen comes from a business background with a capital investment firm known for its support of entities like Google and YouTube.  Paying for Two Bear Air is one of several philanthropic investments he’s made in the Flathead.

White described the organization as privately funded for a public purpose.

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Housing Prices
5:40 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Montana sees increase in median home prices

Real estate broker Alan Bock shows off a $375,000 home near Helena, which is about $175,000 more than the counties median price.
Credit Dan Boyce

Data released Thursday from the U.S. Census Bureau shows Montana’s median home value moved up 5 percent in the two years after the Great Recession.

The statistics were gathered in the states nine most populous counties in the years 2010-2012 and were compared to the same figures from the recession years of 2007-2009. They show the state’s median price for owner-occupied households bumped up to $183,600 from $174,900 during the recession.

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Animal History
1:20 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

We love them - and we eat them: our contradictory relationship to animals

University of Colorado historian Thomas Andrews

University of Colorado historian Thomas Andrews' first book on Colorado coal miners won the prestigious Bancroft award - and also led him to the topic of his second book, with the grandiose title "An Animal's History of the United States."

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Red Cloud
10:37 am
Wed November 13, 2013

The only Indian chief to win a war against the U.S. Army

Oglala Sioux Chief Red Cloud

The names of Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull are well-known but another less famous Native American leader had at least as great an impact on the history of the American West.

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Energy Efficiency
5:45 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Electric Co-op's paying a different kind of energy bill

Local electric co-ops are writing checks for a different kind of energy bill. Flathead Electric Co-op in Kalispell recently wrote a check to Plum Creek for more than $380,000. It’s for energy efficiency upgrades at the lumber company’s sawmill. Promoting energy efficiency is something F-E-C is doing with the Bonneville Power Administration’s Energy Smart Industrial Program incentives.

Key Accounts Representative Don Newton with FEC said it’s actually in the Co-op’s best interest to get members to lower their electric bills.

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Deer Culling
5:37 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Helena asks state for permission to cull 70 'urban deer' in 2014

Credit flickr/jseattle

The City of Helena is asking for permission to trap and kill 70 deer next year that live in the city limits.

The state wildlife commission approves such requests.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce tells us Helena has been working for years to lower the population of these so-called urban deer.

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Food donations
2:02 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Montana Food Bank Network going from one busy season to another

Credit Montana Food Bank Network

There are very few chances to step back, catch your breath and admire ones work at the Montana Food Bank Network.

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NSA Leaks
11:36 am
Mon November 11, 2013

ACLU National Security Attorney says MT leading in digital privacy

ACLU National Security Project Attorney Patrick Toomey

The National Security Agency has come under public scrutiny the past few months after details of secret surveillance programs were leaked to the media.

These programs involve broad monitoring of cell phone calls, emails, and online chats.

The NSA claims these programs have kept Americans safe, but they have raised widespread concerns the agency is going too far in invading the privacy of U.S. citizens.

The American Civil Liberties Union actively opposes the NSA’s spy programs.

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