One of Montana’s best known and well-respected authors has died. Ivan Doig passed away today at his home in Seattle from multiple myeloma at the age of 75.

Doig was born in White Sulpher Springs in 1939, and his books were set in Montana.

Early Education Funding Fails To Make The Cut In Senate Budget

Apr 9, 2015

The Republican-controlled Senate today gave preliminary approval to the state’s main budget bill. The GOP majority allowed only a few technical amendments and resisted attempts by Democrats to add additional funding or programs to House Bill 2. This includes a Bullock Administration proposal to fund early childhood education.

Cherie Newman

When Aaron Parrett set out to make a list of the literature created in and about Butte, Montana, he discovered something surprising: Contrary to popular belief, Mary McLane was not the first novelist to come out of Butte. The first novel he discovered was published in 1880s by Josephine White Bates.

The great Montana author Ivan Doig passed away today at 75. Here's an archived interview with Ivan Doig from "The Write Question".

Morning Newscast 04-09-15

Apr 9, 2015
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

On this edition of Montana Morning Newscast, despite two days of political maneuvering by opponents, a Medicaid expansion bill will come up for debate and vote in the Montana House today.

Veterans seeking care at Montana's largest VA hospital experience more long delays than the national average despite pledges by senior officials to cut down on wait times.

F.H. Stoltze Land and Lumber in Columbia Falls, MT
Eric Whitney

We’re continuing our series of interviews on the new management plan for the Flathead National Forest. We’ve heard from the Forest Service and the Montana Wilderness Association so far. This time we’re talking to a prominent timber company executive.

Paul McKenzie is the lands and resource manager at F.H. Stoltze Land and Lumber in Columbia Falls. I spoke to him in his office.

Evening Newscast 04-08-15

Apr 8, 2015
MTPR Evening Newscast
Josh Burnham

On this edition of the Montana Evening Newscast, a Medicaid expansion bill is still alive at the Montana legislature. It will be voted on by the full House of Representatives tomorrow afternoon.

State lawmakers debated reproductive rights today.

The Ravalli County commission is trying to find someone who can track down former county treasurer Valerie Stamey.

State Budget On Thursday's Legislative Agenda

Apr 8, 2015
Montana Capitol
William Marcus

Thursday at the Montana Legislature, the state budget heads to the full Senate.

Senate Committee Hears Personhood Bill That Would Criminalize Abortion

Apr 8, 2015

Today at the Montana legislature, the Senate Judiciary Committee heard the last public testimony for a bill that would ask voters to redefine personhood to include fetuses, which would criminalize abortion.

A House panel is considering whether Montana Developmental Center in Boulder should be closed, after multiple reports of clients being physically or sexually assaulted. MDC treats people with developmental disabilities, who are sent there by court order.  

Bernadette Franks-Ongoy, who heads Disability Rights Montana, says ongoing reports of physical and sexual abuse against clients justify closing the center, and transferring its residents to community-based group homes.

The controversy over the water compact for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes continued this week when the head of the Flathead County Republicans alleged that groups supporting the compact failed to fully disclose their lobbying activities.

Medicaid Expansion Bill Survives Another Day

Apr 8, 2015

Democrats won their fight to bring a Medicaid expansion bill to the House floor for debate.  It came with help from 11 Republicans Representatives.

Montana Capitol
William Marcus

The lone bill barely alive at the Montana Legislature that expand Medicaid coverage to the working poor is now tangled in a procedural fight over the House rules.

It will be an interpretation of those rules that will determine whether the full House gets to debate this bill on the floor.

This fight over Medicaid Expansion began long before the Republican-controlled House Human Services Committee held yesterday’s hearing on Senate Bill 405.

But it came to a head during executive action held after the four and a half hour hearing on this bill.

Morning Newscast 04-08-15

Apr 8, 2015
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

On this edition of Montana Morning Newscast, one of the biggest bills in this year’s Montana Legislature remains in limbo.

Montana senators are contemplating a fee system to pay for repairs to pedestrian trails around the state.

The Montana Senate has voted down a proposal that would have punished people who watch, not organize, animal fights.

The company responsible for a 30,000 gallon oil spill into the Yellowstone River will try to remove its breached pipeline today as regulators investigate the cause of the accident that contaminated downstream water supplies.

National Science Foundation - National Teacher Enhancement Network

Kurt Alt worked as a wildlife biologist for the Fish, Wildlife and Parks Department of the State of Montana from 1975 till his retirement in 2010. As Wildlife Manager for Southwest Montana, Alt supervised work in the Gallatin and Madison drainages of southwest Montana, collecting and analyzing data on moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, elk, deer, mountain lions, bears, antelope, and many other native species of the area.

Mudslide Charley Plays The Blues

Apr 8, 2015

Missoula, Montana's enduring purveyors of blues, Mudslide Charley, make a return visit to “Musicians’ Spotlight.”

Cassandra Falke & John Keats: One Sublime Moment

Apr 8, 2015
William Hilton the Younger. (British National Portrait Gallery)

Cassandra Falke recounts a sunlit moment shared with a coyote, above Santa Fe:

William Marcus

One of the biggest bills in this year’s Montana Legislature remains in limbo. Wednesday at noon, the House rules committee will meet to decide whether a committee had the right to kill a Medicaid expansion proposal with a “do not pass” recommendation.

Evening Newscast 04-07-15

Apr 7, 2015
MTPR Evening Newscast
Josh Burnham

On this edition of the Montana Evening Newscast, Democratic leadership at the state legislature is trying to revive a compromise Medicaid expansion bill on the House Floor

Former Montana Governor Tim Babcock died Tuesday morning at the age of 95.

A 24-year-old man has acknowledged stabbing a well-known photographer and philanthropist to death in downtown Billings.

Poor weather may have played a role in a small airplane crash that killed a Canadian pilot in MAHR County in March.

Montana Lawmakers To Consider Boxing Regulation

Apr 7, 2015
Montana Capitol
William Marcus

Wednesday at the Montana legislature, lawmakers hear a bill aimed at getting pro boxing back in Montana.

Former Governor Tim Babcock died Tuesday morning at the age of 95.

Babcock was elected Montana's lieutenant Governor in 1960. He became the state's chief executive when a plane crash killed Governor Don Nutter, who was also Babcock's close friend, two years later.

Babcock would go on to lose a U.S. Senate race and another bid to serve in the Governor's office, but he and his late wife, Betty, remained active in state politics for the rest of their lives.

Morning Newscast 04-07-15

Apr 7, 2015
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

On this edition of Montana Morning Newscast, a judge has heard closing arguments in the city of Missoula's effort to gain ownership of the water company that serves its residents.

U.S. safety officials say tank cars carrying oil or ethanol by rail urgently need to be retrofitted to make them more fire-resistant after a spate of explosive accidents in recent months.

A Montana man has pleaded guilty to wire fraud and money laundering after prosecutors said his companies ran up $70 million in unauthorized charges on phone bills across the nation in a "cramming" scheme.

Swans at Freezeout Lake Wildlife Management Area
Montana FWP

Some state lawmakers want to call a halt to any new purchases of wildlife habitat by the state’s Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Parks. It’s a debate about priorities, but some people say it’s also a case of political payback.

Evening Newscast 04-06-15

Apr 6, 2015
MTPR Evening Newscast
Josh Burnham

On this edition of the Montana Evening Newscast, closing arguments concluded today in the condemnation trail for the City of Missoula’s water system.

A 46-year-old California man with a lengthy criminal record has been sentenced to 100 years in prison in a Montana drug case.

A lawyer for the company that owns Missoula’s city water system says it’s proven it can operate the system better than the city, and therefore it should not be forced to sell it to the city through condemnation.

Mountain Water Company, Missoula, MT.
Cheri Trusler

Closing arguments were heard Monday in the condemnation trail for the City of Missoula’s water system.

The city has been trying to buy the privately-owned Mountain Water Company since 2011.

Sen. Ed Buttrey (R) SD13
Montana Legislature

Tuesday brings a crucial test for Medicaid expansion in Montana. Republican Senator Ed Buttrey’s bill to offer the government-funded health coverage to about 70,000 more Montanans faces a hearing before the same committee that killed a similar proposal by Democratic Governor Steve Bullock.

Hunting Groups Take Aim At 'Crowd Shooting'

Apr 6, 2015
Flickr User Ian Sane CC-BY-2.0

Last week, a citizen’s advisory group to Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks started fundraising to produce an education campaign in direct response to controversial "crowd-shooting" incidents last November.

Don Carlo

Apr 6, 2015

04/11/2015 - Approximate running time 4 hrs. 35 min.

Dynamic maestro Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts Verdi’s ambitious score with a stand-out cast in Nicholas Hytner’s handsome production. Yonghoon Lee sings the title role, with Barbara Frittoli, Ekaterina Gubanova, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, James Morris, and Ferruccio Furlanetto, reprising his definitive portrayal of King Philip.

Co-production of the Metropolitan Opera; Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London; and the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet

Ernani by Verdi

Apr 6, 2015

04/04/2015 - Approximate running time 3 hrs. 25 min.

Plácido Domingo takes on the baritone role of Don Carlo for the first time in his legendary career. Francesco Meli and Luc Robert share the title role, and Angela Meade is the soprano heroine Elvira, caught between rivals for her love. Paul Nadler conducts.