Eric Whitney

News Director

Eric is the news director for Montana Public Radio.

Ways To Connect

Steve Jess, MTPR

    

Yesterday Governor Steve Bullock, a Democrat, signed a Medicaid expansion bill into law that was sponsored by a Republican senator, Ed Buttrey. Buttrey has long been opposed to Medicaid expansion as called for in President Obama’s Affordable Care Act. So how did the businessman from Great Falls come to sponsor a Medicaid expansion bill? I asked him about that immediately after yesterday’s bill signing ceremony at the capitol.

Eric Whitney

Montana's U.S. Senators want Secure Rural Schools payments distributed in short order, now that President Obama has reauthorized the act. S.R.S  funds compensate rural counties with federal land that have experienced declining timber production.   

Gov. Bullock signs the Medicaid expansion plan into law on April 29 at the captiol. The bill's sponsor Sen. Ed Buttrey, and supporter Stephanie Wallace look on.
Steve Jess

Backers of Medicaid expansion celebrated in Helena today as Governor Bullock signed the bill extending the health coverage to an estimated 45,000 more Montanans.

Global energy leaders are meeting at the University of Montana today through Friday for the Asia-Montana Energy Summit.

Leaders in global energy issues from five different countries are converging at the University of Montana Wednesday through Friday for the Asia-Montana Energy Summit. Hosted by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Center, the summit will highlight trends that are shaping the world’s energy future, and Montana’s role in it. I talked about the summit with the Mansfield Center’s director, Abraham Kim.

Eric Whitney

The book that author Jon Krakauer released Monday, "Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town," paints a very unflattering picture of Missoula County Attorney Kirsten Pabst.

Krakauer writes that when Pabst was a county prosecutor in 2011, she dismissed the allegations of at least one sexual assault victim, and that Pabst was, “simply wrong” in recounting what that victim said happened to her. The book is sharply critical of prosecutors’ decisions not to prosecute sexual assaults.

Eric Whitney

Tuesday, a book was released about Missoula, addressing the very heartbreaking issue and challenges surrounding acquaintance rape, an important topic that affects so many of us. UM President Engstrom said, "We have strong relationships with officials, the business community and groups across our valley, as he said “when our community faces challenges, we work together to find answers.”

University of Montana

Dear Colleagues,
This morning, Jon Krakauer’s book “Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town”
was released. I want to share with you my thoughts about sexual assault and the University of
Montana because it is such an important topic that all college campuses – student groups, staff,
faculty, and administrators – must address.
UM has strong relationships with city and county officials, with the business community, and
with so many groups across the valley. When our community faces challenges, we work together
to find answers.

Courtesy Photo

A bill to allow residents in some elementary school districts to vote on building and operating new high schools will now face a third and final vote in the House.

Currently the bill affects the elementary districts of Missoula Hellgate, East Helena, and Lockwood near Billings.

Courtesy Photo jonkrakauer.com

Tuesday sees the release of Author Jon Krakauer’s new book, “Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town. The book chronicles high profile sexual assault allegations involving University of Montana students starting in 2010, and their investigations. 

The large fire at A1 Salvage yard near Somers is out, according to Somers-Lakeside Fire Department Assistant Chief Jeremy Hayes.

“We don’t have a total yet of how many cars were in the fire,” Hayes said, “but no structures were involved.”

The source of the fire is under investigation. 

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