Montana News

News from the state of Montana.

The environmental organization Earth First began circulating a guidebook on how to sabotage the hunting of wolves last week.

The online guide lays out steps for destroying wolf traps, releasing trapped wolves and disrupting wolf hunts through methods such as smoke bombs and air horns. It asserts states, the NRA, and the Obama Administration are engaging in a conspiracy to wipe wolves off the face of the planet.

Sally Mauk

Residents of Sleeman Gulch, a few miles east of the Lolo Creek Complex fire off Highway 12, have been placed on pre-evacuation notice - meaning they need to be ready to leave on the spur of the moment. Sleeman road is a one-way-in, one-way-out gravel road.

Kirk Derby lives near the end of the road, in a house he and his wife just bought a year ago. Last night they left to wait out the fire in town, but returned today to clear more stuff from their house.

Edward O'Brien

Planned Parenthood of Montana's new President and C-E-O, Martha Stahl, says she's a natural fit for the organization.

Dan Boyce

Governor Steve Bullock is looking to put more focus into early childhood education—that is, education before a kid is five years old. Bullock said Montana ranks near the bottom of states in investment in early ed.

However, state spending did increase this past legislative session by nearly $2 and a half million dollars.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce says that money will go toward increasing a ranking program for day-care centers called the Best Beginnings Stars to Quality Program.

 The country has just a few more months before many of the major elements of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, go into effect. This includes a requirement for Americans to buy health insurance, starting the first of the year.

An online marketplace will be giving Montanans without insurance options to buy plans from one of three providers. In this Feature Interview, Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce speaks with Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica Lindeen about choices people will have regarding the marketplace.

Sally Mauk

Breaking: Highway 12, from the intersection of Highway 93 South to Lolo Pass is now CLOSED.

Western Montana Fair 4-H animal presentations

Aug 19, 2013
Justin Steck

The Western Montana Fair recently descended upon Missoula’s Fairgrounds for the 134th time. 

The American Cancer Society's non-profit advocacy affiliate has released a report outlining how Montana legislative activity affects cancer prevention outcomes.

Katrin Frye

A new company is taking over management of Glacier Park’s historic hotels and restaurants. The National Park Service owns the buildings, but for the past 30-plus years Glacier Park Incorporated has been running the businesses. Glacier Park recently announced the Colorado-based Xanterra Parks & Resorts, Inc will replace Glacier Park Incorporated as the Concessioner operating these businesses with the new year.

File Photo

US Congressman Steve Daines said this week it makes sense to include his seven-day trip to Israel as a part of his ‘Montana Jobs Tour.’

“As Montana looks to the future, we’re gonna be highly dependent to grow our economy based on exports,” Daines said.

He visited several Montana towns last week as part of the tour, including Bozeman, Butte, and Billings.

Sussex School

The director of a private Missoula K-8 school attended a training seminar last month at U-C Berkeley to learn more about teaching "social-emotional learning skills".

Nearly five-thousand Montanans are diagnosed with cancer every year.

That’s according to figures from the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services.

And an estimated 42-thousand cancer survivors are living in the state right now.

But, even if they are free from the disease, many of these survivors are still dealing with long-lasting impacts from the treatments which saved their lives.

Dr. Julie Silver is a rehabilitation physician and associate professor at Harvard Medical School.

A tour of the L&C Interpretive Center

Aug 14, 2013
Dan Boyce

It’s been more than 200 years since Lewis and Clark led the ‘Corps of Discovery’ through Montana as part of their legendary expedition across the American West.

Their exploits are chronicled at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, on the banks of the Missouri River in Great Falls.

About 70 volunteer guides lead visitors through the various exhibits.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce joins one such guide for a look around.  

climate911.org

Doctor Wendy Ring is bicycling across the country, speaking to various groups about the impacts of climate change.

Dan Boyce

A closed casket viewing was held in the Capitol building’s rotunda this for the public to pay respects for former Montana First Lady Betty Babcock.

The wife of former Governor Tim Babcock died this past Sunday at age 91.

It’s rare for anybody to lie in state in Montana’s seat of public power.

Former Governor Tom Judge’s casket was given a public viewing after he died in 2006. That was in the Old Supreme Court Chambers, on the third floor.  

Edward O'Brien

Missoula County Fairgrounds has a new director and his name is Todd Garrett. Garrett will replace Steve Earle who, earlier this year, announced his retirement plans.
      Garrett and his family currently live in Whitefish. He's a University of Montana grad who earned a degree in Recreation Management. Garrett says many people mistakenly assume that's a discipline rooted in fun and games, when in fact, he says he learned critically important management and communication skills.

University of California, San Francisco

Over 300 health professionals, advocates and

Mike Steinberg

Missoula's Roxy Theater has served as the headquarters of the International Wildlife Film Festival for several years.

Montana reporters with the Associated Press have been receiving online threats for more than the past week after requesting the public information available on the state’s concealed carry permit holders.

The request made headlines in recent weeks after the Attorney General’s office refused the request, citing privacy concerns.

Montana reporters with the Associated Press have been receiving online threats for requesting the public information available on the state’s concealed carry permit holders.

The request made headlines in recent weeks after the Attorney General’s office refused the request, citing privacy concerns.

Attorney General Tim Fox speaks with Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce about those threats and how his administration plans to approach open records requests in the future.

  

SSA Marine

American coal companies want to vastly increase their sale of coal to Asia, including coal from Montana, but that requires a new coal export terminal to be built on the west coast to handle the shipments.

Seeds to Cities/Adventure Cycling

Three young women are bicycling from California to New York this summer gathering information about seeds; meeting people who produce and save seeds, traditions that revolve around seeds and local agriculture.

Laurie Bridgeman

17-year-old Jesse Linton of Missoula has changed a lot over the past couple of years.

Dan Boyce

PPL Montana is now operating a completely renovated Rainbow Dam, just a few miles northeast of Great Falls.

The $230 million project marks the biggest investment in energy generation in the state since the Colstrip coal-fired power plant was built about 30 years ago.

PPL Montana Director of External Affairs David Hoffman said the new power house generates almost twice as much electricity as the old one. It’s enough to power about 45-thousand homes.

Construction on this renovation started back in 2009 and went fully online this past April.

Sally Mauk

One in 2000 kids are born with genital or reproductive anatomy or chromosomal patterns that are not clearly male or female.

The Montana Attorney General’s Office deposited a new $40 million check this week—money from the sale of Blue Cross, Blue Shield of Montana to an out of state company.

Another $100 million or more may eventually be on the way as Blue Cross sells off its assets.

National Weather Service meteorologist LeAnne Allegretto describes an incoming weather system as a potential "resetting" event; one that could - at least temporarily - give firefighters in parts of western Montana a much needed break.
       The technical term for this sort of wet, slow-moving weather event is a "cut-off low". Allegretto says thunderstorms will start to develop across central Idaho and southwest Montana.

photo courtesy Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribes

If all goes as planned, in September 2015, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai tribes will be the first tribes in the country to own a major hydroelectric facility.

Dan Boyce

A group of Great Falls health advocates are accusing at least nine bars and casinos in that city of not being in compliance with Montana’s Clean Indoor Air Act.

The law prohibits smoking in public buildings and fully went into effect in 2009.

At issue are so-called ‘smoke shacks’ attached to the casinos. These ventilated rooms allow people to smoke, drink and use gaming machines. Bar owners are open-air vents in the rooms make them technically not indoor, enclosed, spaces.

Coal development generates money in Montana. Executive Director of the Montana Coal Council Bud Clinch said an average train carrying coal has about 120 cars, and represents about $30,000 of local, state, and federal taxes being paid.

He said Coal is worth continuing to invest in, it’s what Montana has, and the demand for it is not going away.

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