Steve Bullock

Gianforte Raises $255K For Possible Governor Run

19 hours ago
Greg Gianforte at his home in Bozeman
Eric Whitney

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Greg Gianforte's exploratory campaign says the Republican has raised $255,000 since he announced a possible run for governor in mid-August.

Last week Governor Steve Bullock announced a new, multi-million dollar initiative to reform child protective services in Montana.

That’s the system that follows up on reports of child abuse and neglect. About 1,400 reports a year like that come in. Montana’s Child and Family Services Division can recommend that kids in those situations can be placed in foster care for their own protection.

The first round of recipients for the 2016 funds includes a $100,000  building expansion for the Missoula Carousel.
Natemford (CC-BY-SA-3)

Governor Steve Bullock and the Montana Department of Commerce announced the first round of tourism grants under a new program it launched on July 1.

On Monday Governor Steve Bullock announced Montana will be hiring 33 new social workers for the Department of Child and Family Services. He says the new positions represent a 160 percent increase in the number of staff providing frontline services to children and families.

Greater sage grouse. The Department of Interior announced it's decision today not to recommend endangered species protections for the bird.

Governor Steve Bullock says Tuesday’s decision to not recommend endangered species protection for the greater sage grouse is good for both industry and conservationists.

Gov. Steve Bullock. File Photo
Christopher B. Allen

Governor Steve Bullock today said he’s taking action where the state legislature chose not to, to reform the state’s system for protecting abused and neglected children.

Montana State Hospital in Warm Springs.
Courtesy Montana State Hospital

Governor Steve Bullock announced that 16 Montana counties have received a total of almost $2 million in state funding to help keep the mentally ill out of jail and, when possible,the state mental hospital.

Gov. Bullock Highlights Partnership To Improve Internet In Montana Schools

Sep 14, 2015

Governor Steve Bullock held an event in Bozeman to highlight a new public-private partnership working to bring broadband internet service to schools across the country at little- to no-cost.

A public-private partnership is working to bring broadband to schools across the country at little- to no-cost.

Kevin and Marti Murphy and their children at their home in Colstrip.
Amy Martin

Kevin Murphy has worked at the Rosebud coal mine for 15 years, running a bulldozer which works in tandem with a dragline – a machine as big as a ship with a giant boom that extends 300 feet up into the air. The dragline perches on the lip of an open pit, scraping away hundreds of feet of rocky soil to reveal the black seam of compressed prehistoric peat that humans have been burning for fuel for millennia.

STEM Education And More

Sep 2, 2015
Jackie Yamanaka

As the Baby Boom generation starts to retire in big numbers, Montana is facing a potential shortage of skilled workers.

Efforts to fill jobs being vacated by retirees start in elementary school.

At first glance, Mr. Marquis’ classroom may seem chaotic. Take a closer look and you’ll find students standing at tables with plastic tubs filled with wires, wheels, joy sticks, and various small parts, and they’re consulting their tablets.

Gov. Bullock is hopeful upcoming talks will help clear the way to allowing Montana DNRC helicopters to work fires on federal lands.

It looks like there may be progress in the dispute between Montana and the U.S. Forest Service over firefighting helicopters.

Opinion: History Bodes Well for Bullock Reelection

Aug 27, 2015

Analyzing historical electoral patterns may seem like an exercise for the back rooms of a university political science department.  But active practitioners in the political arena dive into history to find patterns that are indicative, if not predictive, of what might happen in current and future election cycles. 

A helicopter on initial attack on the Burke Gulch fire this week, one of 40 lightning-caused wildfires crews have contained since Aug. 10.
Courtesy Cory Rennaker Bitterroot Helitack

Governor Steve Bullock sent a letter to the U.S. Forest Service today saying he’s frustrated that Montana’s fleet of firefighting helicopters often can’t be used to attack fires on federal land.

Gov. Steve Bullock speaks about the benefits of the Montana University System Research Initiative, Tuesday, August 18, 2015 on the UM campus.
Edward O'Brien

Two University of Montana programs will share over $3.5 million in state research funds. UM's traumatic brain injury and water quality monitoring programs are among the first to benefit from the "Montana University System Research Initiative". That's a $15 million program that passed out of the last session of the Montana legislature.

Montana Wildfire Roundup For August 17, 2015

Aug 17, 2015
The Marston Fire Lookout on the Kootenai National Forest was wrapped up as a precaution against encroaching flames.

So many wildfires are burning across Montana that Governor Bullock has declared a fire emergency, and the Montana National Guard has been tapped to join the firefighting efforts. Here's a roundup of some of the largest fires burning in western Montana today.

Smoke from the Marston Fire, buring in Lincoln County.

Several dozen Montana National Guard members are getting ready to join the statewide firefighting effort - and they could soon be joined by active-duty troops. Governor Steve Bullock declared a state of emergency on Sunday, allowing state resources including the National Guard to be mobilized.

Courtesy Photo

NOTE: This post has been edited on 8/19 to clarify information about disenrollment from Medicaid related to not engaging in work or job training programs. 

Montana is holding public meetings this week to get input on its Medicaid expansion plans.

As the state prepares to ask the federal government to accept its version of Medicaid expansion, one critic of the proposal wants to make sure the state is telling the whole story.

Steve Jess

Montana Democrats re-elected their party leadership and heard pep talks about the coming election at their party convention over the weekend in Bozeman. 

Governor Declares Fire Emergency In Montana

Aug 16, 2015

Citing active wildfires and extreme fire danger across the state, Governor Steve Bullock has issued an executive order declaring a fire emergency in Montana. “Montana is facing extreme fire conditions. This declaration will provide additional resources to the brave men and women fighting these fires,” Bullock said of the declaration. 

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.

Critics of the Clean Power Plan worry about its impacts on coal development and jobs.

News reports are saying that President Obama’s Clean Power Plan has set new targets for Montana that are twice as large as those floated last year in a draft of the plan. But the head of Montana’s Department of Environmental Quality, Tom Livers, says it’s still unclear to him what exactly the new thresholds are.

The plan the White House unveiled today to reduce carbon dioxide emissions nationwide is meeting with strong and broad criticism in Montana.

Gov. Steve Bullock. File Photo
Christopher B. Allen

Governor Steve Bullock issued the following statement on the Clean Power Plan President Obama announced today:

Sage Grouse
USFWS Mountain Prairie (CC-BY-2)

Governor Steve Bullock Monday signed on to a joint state and federal plan to provide incentives for farmers and ranchers to preserve sage grouse habitat on their land. The chicken-sized wild bird is in decline and could be listed as an endangered species this fall.

Health centers like Missoula's Partnership Health Center hope Medicaid expansion will bring more financial certainty.
Josh Burnham

Montana’s legislature said yes to Medicaid expansion this spring, but the state’s expansion plan still needs approval by the federal government.

Today, the state made the details of its expansion plan public, and is giving the public 60 days to comment on the plan before sending it to the White House.

Josh Burnham

Bozeman's Stacey Haugland never thought she'd live to see the day when gay marriage would be legalized nationwide. The Supreme Court today guaranteed that right.

William Marcus

Budget officials from the Montana Governor’s office faced an angry panel of state lawmakers Wednesday morning. Members of the Legislative Audit Committee demanded to know why a crucial report on the state’s finances was issued in May instead of March, but also contained multiple mistakes, with the potential to cost taxpayers money.

Greg Gianforte speaking to the Conrad, Montana Chamber of Commerce
Eric Whitney

Not everybody's summer road trip around Montana generates headlines at every stop, but Greg Gianforte's does, and Gianforte is not just anybody. He's been meeting with local chambers of commerce, like a group of about 10 people at the Sport Club restaurant in Shelby recently.

Gov. Bullock was joined by tribal leaders from across Montana as he signed an executive order creating a state office of American Indian Health.
Courtesy Office of the Governor

The lifespan of Montana’s Native Americans is twenty years shorter, on average, than others in the state.  Montana Governor Steve Bullock is launching an effort to close that gap by finding and fixing the shortcomings of the health care system for the state’s Indian population.

Two Medicaid Expansion Opponents Named To State Oversight Committee

May 29, 2015

Governor Steve Bullock and Legislative leaders named their picks for the 9-member panel that will oversee the roll-out of Medicaid coverage for Montana’s working poor. The oversight committee includes two opponents of Medicaid Expansion.