MTPR

economy

Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument.
Bureau of Land Management

Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke will decide whether to shrink or eliminate 22 national monuments later this month. As Yellowstone Public Radio’s Brie Ripley reports, these monuments are significant money-makers for business owners across the West, who met in Helena and Great Falls Wednesday to discuss their concerns.

In Montana outdoor recreation generates nearly $6 billion in consumer spending annually, and supports over 60,000 jobs.

2016 non-resident expenditure allocation by category.
UM Institute of Tourism and Recreation Research

Montana’s tourism industry saw more people last year, but fewer dollars.

That’s according to the latest update released today by the Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research at the University of Montana.

In 2016 about 12.5 million out of state visitors came to Montana, that’s up 3 percent over 2015.

A recent informal survey of Missoula parents highlights some of the biggest ongoing local childcare needs and challenges.
(PD)

Affordable and easily accessible childcare is just as elusive in Montana as it is everywhere else in America. At a luncheon Tuesday, a Missoula County group called Healthy Start Missoula that’s supported by a federal grant laid out the challenges and offered one potential private-sector solution.

Healthy Start Coordinator, Anna Semple, says parents now have precious few infant childcare options:

Bill Would Reduce Taxes For MT Farmers, Ranchers, Business Owners

Mar 13, 2017
Montana, especially rural Montana went big for Donald Trump in the 2016 election, but a lot of farmers and ranchers disagree with him on big, multi-country trade deals.
PD

Supporters of a bill aimed at reducing property taxes in Montana say the agricultural industry needs help because of dropping commodity prices.

Voters in Clinton, MT cast ballots during the 2016 elections.
Rebekah Welch

A bill designed to save county governments half a million dollars or more is facing a time crunch in the state legislature. It would allow them to conduct mail-in only balloting. If it’s going to have any impact on how voters select the state’s next U.S. congressman, it must pass out of what one lawmaker is calling a kill committee.

Josh Burnham

Healthcare employment in Montana grew by more than 3 percent last year, after years of growth below 1 percent. That's according to the new annual report from the University of Montana's Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

2016 was the first full year of Medicaid expansion in Montana under the Affordable Care Act, which helped the state's uninsured rate drop by nearly two-thirds.

Montana's economy slowed significantly in 2016, and continued slow growth is projected for this year.
Courtesy BBER Montana

Montana's economy slowed significantly in 2016, and continued slow growth is projected for this year. That's according to new numbers released today by economists at the University of Montana.

Montana's Minimum Wage Set To Increase In 2017

Sep 29, 2016
Getty Images/iStock Photo

Montana’s minimum wage will increase by 10 cents starting next year.

A little over one percent of Montana’s workforce receives minimum wage, which is currently $8.05 an hour.

Republican Representatives Brad Tschida, Ron Ehli, and Nancy Ballance.
Edward O'Brien

With the election six weeks away, Republican state lawmakers say Montana’s Democratic governor needs a reality check. They say the state’s economy is more fragile than Steve Bullock’s letting on.

Lt. Governor Mike Cooney, Governor Steve Bullock, and Montana Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Pam Bucy announce the 2016 Labor Day report, September 6, 2016 in Helena.
Corin Cates-Carney

A jobs report released Tuesday by the state’s Department Labor and Industry gives a glowing picture of Montana's current job market, but predicts a worker shortage in the next decade.

Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Pam Bucy handed the 2016 Labor Day report to Governor Steve Bullock during a press conference hosted by a financial company in Helena.

Montana labor officials will offer advice on job retraining for fishing guides, raft operators and other workers affected by the closure of a 183-mile stretch of the Yellowstone River.
Montana Department of Labor and Industry

Montana labor officials will offer advice on job retraining for fishing guides, raft operators and other workers affected by the closure of a 183-mile stretch of the Yellowstone River.

Governor Steve Bullock announced today that the Department of Labor and Industry will host a meeting in Livingston on Monday.

(PD)

For the fourth year in a row Montana ranks as the state with the highest number of business startups. That’s according to the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. The group says Montana leads the pack among the nation’s 25 least populated states.

Gov. Bullock Announces Proposals To Spur Business Growth
Corin Cates-Carney

Governor Steve Bullock walked between yellow safety lines painted on the floor at the Anderson Steel Company in Great Falls Tuesday. Bullock choose the steel fabrication plant to announce new proposals aimed at spurring economic growth through legislative action.

Teri Loring Dahle runs a graphic design company. She attended the conference to network with other native business owners.
Katie Riordan

Some estimate that as much as 90 cents of every dollar that enters Montana’s seven Indian reservations may end up being spent elsewhere. State policy makers like Casey Lozar say that’s because there’s a severe lack of business opportunities on tribal lands, and it’s bleeding local economies dry.

Sally Mauk and her guests dissect the first TV ad in Montana’s governor’s race, tally up the big bucks in the U.S. House race, and look at the candidates in the race for superintendent of schools in this episode of "Campaign Beat."

Montana women are earning 67 percent of what men earn.
Flickr user photosteve101

Tuesday, Montana’s gender pay gap was spotlighted at the Capitol. It’s National Equal Pay Day. And Montana women are earning 67 percent of what men earn. Montana is ranked 39th in the nation for gender pay equality. Nationally, women workers earn 71 percent of men’s median earnings.

Under the new bill, craft brewers will now be able to sell beer in tasting rooms on premises and still can and keg up to 60,000 barrels a year.
Kelli Whithorn (CC-BY-2)

A University of Montana Business Survey says that manufacturers in Montana are optimistic about the year ahead.

A new survey done by the University of Montana and Stanford University says a majority of Montana residents support transferring at least some federal public lands here to state control.
USFWS

A new survey done by the University of Montana and Stanford University says a majority of Montana residents support transferring at least some federal public lands here to state control. That contradicts some previous polls.

Republican candidate for governor Greg Gianforte.
Jackie Yamanaka - Yellowstone Public Radio

Today, Republican Gubernatorial candidate Greg Gianforte is announcing an extension to his listening tour of more than 60 cities, according to a campaign spokesperson. Gianforte says what he is calling the ‘regulation roundup’ tour is an opportunity to listen to Montana's ideas about business-suffocating regulations that he would put an end to.

Montana has seen almost seven straight years of economic growth now, and more is forecasted for the future.

Recruiters At UM Say They're Looking For Talent And Ready To Hire
flickr user Neetal Parekh (CC-BY-NC-2)

The latest unemployment numbers say the state jobless rate fell by a tenth of a percentage point in December to an even four percent. The national unemployment rate is five percent.

The Department of Labor and Industry says Montana added 10,200 jobs in 2015.

Anton Gabrielson, a student at Missoula College hopes to trade in his hiking boots for a stint as a long-haul truck driver.

"Coming from a background as a wilderness ranger I’m attracted to the nomadic aspect of being a long-haul truck driver. I think I’m well-suited for that lifestyle, at least for a few years.”

Montana's construction sector is making gains, but still isn't back to pre-recession levels.
(PD)

Montana's construction industry has come a long way in the past few years, but University of Montana economist Patrick Barkey says the industry is still feeling the effects of The Great Recession.

Gov Bullock Addresses Native American Business Leaders In Billings

Aug 5, 2015

Montana’s reservation communities still are not enjoying the same economic benefits as the rest of the state.

Governor Steve Bullock told Native American business leaders meeting in Billings the state is doing what it can to address chronic unemployment and boost entrepreneurship.

The Associated Press is reporting that more than $800,000 has been spent on Montana's special U.S. House election in just two weeks.
(PD)

A new report says the hot spot for wage growth in Montana is Gallatin county.

According to Patrick Barkey, director of the Bureau of Business and Economic Research at the University of Montana, "40% of all state growth was in Gallatin County last year, pretty amazing what’s going on there."

Barkey says the Bozeman area is economically diverse.