MTPR

Ryan Zinke

Montana Capitol.
Mike Albans

State lawmakers consider big budget cuts this session, including $93 million in cuts for the Department of Health and Human Services. The Montana Legislature begins preparations for the possible repeal of the Affordable Care Act, and two familiar names are circulating for the special election to fill Ryan Zinke’s congressional seat — Gianforte and Baucus.

Join Sally Mauk, Chuck Johnson, and Rob Saldin now for this episode of  "Capitol Talk."

Montana’s congressional delegation is seeking to overturn federal mandates for driver's licenses. Senators Steve Daines and Jon Tester and Representative Ryan Zinke announced on Thursday they’ve introduced legislation that would repeal the Real ID Act of 2005.

Feds Dismiss Tongue River Railroad Permit
(PD)

A yearlong federal review shows coal sales from public lands need to be modernized to deal with climate change and give taxpayers a fair return. The Interior Department imposed a moratorium on new coal sales last year. It's now considering raising royalty rates and requiring compensation from mining companies to offset coal's effect on climate change.

Montana Capitol.
Mike Albans

This week on "Capitol Talk": Democrats and Republicans are on a collision course over the state budget. The quickly dissipating spirit of cooperation and non-partisanship at the Legislature. The Republican and Democratic rift over infrastructure projects. And the growing number of candidates, both inside and outside the legislature, for Ryan Zinke's soon-to-be-vacant seat.

Former Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer.
File photo (PD)

Montana Musician Rob Quist landed a significant endorsement in his bid to become the Democratic nominee to run for Congressman Ryan Zinke’s seat. Zinke is expected to give up that seat later this year if the Senate confirms him to be President-elect Trump’s Interior secretary. A special election will be held, likely in the spring.

Rob Quist is a familiar name in Montana. The Cut Bank native who now lives in the Flathead is famous as a songwriter and musician. Now  he's running for Rep. Ryan Zinke's soon to be vacant seat in Congress.
Courtesy

Rob Quist is a familiar name in Montana. The Cut Bank native who now lives in the Flathead is famous as a songwriter and musician, first as a member of the Mission Mountain Wood Band, and then as a solo artist.

Today, Quist said he now wants a job outside the arts:

The U.S. House took a vote related to public lands yesterday that has Democrats and conservation groups crying foul.

It’s part of a larger rules package that would change how Congress calculates the value of federal public lands when it comes to transferring them to states.

State Representative Kelly McCarthy has expressed interest in running to fill Rep. Ryan Zinke's House seat.
Montana Legislature

A third Montana Democrat has announced interest in the party’s nomination for the state’s lone Congressional seat.

President-elect Donald Trump nominated Republican U.S Congressman Ryan Zinke to be the next Secretary of the Interior Department. If Zinke wins that nomination, Democratic Billings State Representative Kelly McCarthy says he'd like to step in to replace him:

US Considers Mining Limits In West To Save Sage Grouse

Dec 29, 2016
The Obama administration offered five possible plans Thursday for limiting mining on federal land in the West to protect the vulnerable greater sage grouse.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Pacific Southwest Region (CC-BY-2)

DENVER (AP) — The Obama administration offered five possible plans Thursday for limiting mining on federal land in the West to protect the vulnerable greater sage grouse, but it isn't saying which it prefers.

The options range from banning new mining activity on about 15,000 square miles for up to 20 years to imposing no additional restrictions on mine locations.

Montana Republicans Set $1,740 Fee For US House Candidates

Dec 29, 2016
Montana Republican Party

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Montana Republican Party is charging a $1,740 fee to people interested in replacing U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke, who has been nominated to lead the Interior Department.

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