In The News


Trump energy secretary sees good future for struggling Colstrip coal plant

The Trump administration's top energy official spoke highly of the future of coal ahead of his visit to Colstrip Friday morning. U.S. Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette told Q2 News in an interview Thursday that he sees good things for the Colstrip coal-fired plant, which saw its two oldest units shut down earlier this year. Two others remain operating, but declining demand has created uncertainty. "We've looked at it from a number of different viewpoints at the Department of Energy. It's part o… Continue Reading


EXCLUSIVE: Senator Steve Daines to meet with Judge Amy Coney Barrett Thursday

As the nomination process moves on to fill Ruth Bader Ginsburg seat, the office of Senator Steve Daines confirms he will be meeting with President Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Judge Amy Coney Barrett Thursday. Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mcconnell is confident Barrett can be confirmed before the November election. Daines has said that this judge is a judge who will represent Montanans. "We're going to talk about the importance of upholding the rule of law and not legislating from the bench… Continue Reading


Professional Baseball Agreement expires, but Pioneer League still confident about future

BILLINGS - It wasn't D-Day for the many Minor League Baseball franchises still facing uncertainty for 2021, but Wednesday marked the crossing of an important threshold in regard to the future of professional baseball in Montana and beyond. With the expiration of the Professional Baseball Agreement, the contract that has governed the working relationship between Major League Baseball and MiLB for the past 30 years, it's getting closer to decision time for the fate of the Pioneer League, which is… Continue Reading


Colstrip and Billings Landing a Visit by Trump’s Energy Secretary

President Trump's Secretary of Energy is coming to Montana later this week. According to the Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette and Senator Steve Daines' (R-MT) office, Colstrip and Billings will both serve as host to the member of President Trump's cabinet. Here's the latest details from the Department of Energy: On Thursday, October 1, 2020, U.S. Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette will travel to Billings, Montana where he will engage with local officials and energy stakeholders in the state. … Continue Reading


VA Secretary Wilkie and Senator Daines Visit Missoula VA Clinic

Veterans Administration Secretary Robert Wilkie visited the Missoula Veterans Clinic on Palmer Street on Monday along with Montana Senator Steve Daines to deliver a message to all the staff members and employees, to thank them for their hard work in serving the growing population of western Montana veterans, especially during the COVID 19 pandemic. "It is a great pleasure for me to be here in Missoula with Senator Daines and our wonderful VA team and Dr. Hayman. I'm going to tell you that I'… Continue Reading


VA Secretary Wilkie praises veterans aid at Fort Harrison

HELENA - Robert Wilkie, secretary of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, said during a visit Monday to facilities in Montana that the Fort Harrison VA Medical Center has a 93% approval rating from clients. "There is nothing like it in the entire United States when it comes to patient satisfaction," he said at a news conference outside the facility, adding later that Forbes magazine recently listed the VA as the best employer in Montana. Wilkie was in Montana at the invitation of Repu… Continue Reading


Montana Ag Network: Pulse growers urge FDA transparency over canine DCM disease

BILLINGS - An upcoming symposium hosted by the federal Food & Drug Administration will address an FDA study linking pulse crops in dog food as a possible cause of enlarged heart disease in some. The FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine has been investigating the causes of canine dilated cardiomyopathy or DCM. And the investigation has been of significant interest to the pet food industry, pet owners and its supply chain which includes farmers like Gordon Stoner. "The pulse industry i… Continue Reading


Efforts made to prevent cuts to Amtrak Empire Builder rail amid coronavirus pandemic

Montana's congressional delegation is trying to derail plans by Amtrak to deal with impacts of the coronavirus by temporarily reducing runs of its Empire Builder, which glides across the Hi-Line and through northwest Montana and celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2019. On June 17, Amtrak officials said they will temporarily decrease service from seven days to three for several routes, including the Empire Builder, which runs along the Hi-Line with stations from Wolf Point to Libby. This will be… Continue Reading


Daines secures additional resources for Montana Census

Trump administration responds to Daines' request U.S. Senator Steve Daines announced that he has successfully secured additional support and resources from the Trump administration to improve Montana's census count. "Montana has so much at stake for the 2020 census including access to federal resources and even the potential for more representation in Congress," Daines said. "I'm glad to see the Trump administration act on my request to send more resources to our state to ensure Montanans are … Continue Reading


Daines Continues Push to Extend Census Deadline

U.S. SENATE - U.S. Senator Steve Daines today joined a bipartisan bill that would extend the Census field collection data deadline from September 30th, 2020 to October 31st, 2020. "The 2020 Census will have a lasting impact on Montana; including the distribution of federal resources to the state and even the potential for more representation in Congress," Daines said. "We must extend the census deadline to October 31st to ensure a proper count is completed in Montana." To view the bill, click … Continue Reading


Daines urges Senate to stop Amtrak cuts

US Senator Steve Daines is urging Senate leaders to take action to block upcoming Amtrak service cuts in Montana. Community leaders across the Hi-Line and Northwest Montana have expressed concern about the passenger rail agency's plans to trim service on the Empire Builder" to three trains per week, as soon as next month. Sen. Daines says Amtrak's daily service cut for the Empire Builder, and trimming staff by 20% will "decimate the economies in Montana" and leave "tens of thousands" without r… Continue Reading


Daines urges Senate to pass bill preventing pedophiles from receiving pension

Sen. Steve Daines is urging his colleagues in the U.S. Senate to pass a bill that would prevent convicted pedophiles from receiving federal pensions. Daines, R-Mont., introduced the bill, called the Denying Pensions to Convicted Child Molesters Act, in 2019. The bill comes in response to Stanley Patrick Weber, a former Indian Health Services pediatrician and convicted child molester who abused children for decades, including on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. Weber is reportedly due $1.8 mil… Continue Reading


Savanna's Act unanimously passes US House, awaits President Donald Trump's signature

Savanna's Act, a bipartisan bill that addresses the missing and murdered Indigenous women epidemic, unanimously passed the U.S. House of Representatives Monday. The bill unanimously passed the U.S. Senate in March and now awaits President Donald Trump's signature. Named in honor of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind, a 22-year-old pregnant Spirit Lake tribal member who was killed in 2017, Savanna's Act requires federal agencies to update databases and create protocols to guide law enforcement entitie… Continue Reading


Daines' Forest Management Bill Heard In Subcommittee

Montana Senator Steve Daines on Sept. 16 stumped for legislation he helped draft, saying more forest management would protect communities from wildfires. Republican Daines presented his Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020 to the Senate Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests, and Mining. He said the bill, which he wrote with Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, restores forest health and supports timber jobs. "We have been working together on this important piece of l… Continue Reading


Bill to name mountain B-47 Ridge heads to president's desk

A bill to name a ridge east of the Paradise Valley for an Air Force bomber that crashed there in 1962 is headed to the desk of President Donald Trump. The B-47 Ridge Designation Act passed the U.S. House unanimously on Monday, clearing the final hurdle between it and the president. The bill would dub a ridge off the southwest side of Emigrant Peak as B-47 Ridge and allow the placing of a memorial plaque at the crash site. It's where four Air Force pilots died in 1962 while flying a training mi… Continue Reading


Daines urges Administration to provide support for Montana Census, ensure all Montanans are represented

U.S. Senator Steve Daines sent a letter urging the Administration to direct additional Census resources to Montana in the final weeks of the field data collection operations to ensure all Montanans are represented. "Given the rural nature of Montana and the additional challenges brought about by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, thousands of Montanans may go uncounted and entire communities could be underrepresented at the federal level," Daines wrote. "I am requesting that trained Census personne… Continue Reading


Daines Secures Over $300,000 for Vaughn Volunteer Fire Department

U.S. Senator Steve Daines today announced that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program will be directing $333,333.33 to the Vaughn Volunteer Fire Department. "This is about ensuring our firefighters in Vaughn have the critical support needed to keep our communities safe during this fire season," Daines said. "I will continue working to ensure all of our brave firefighters have the help they need as they work to battle wildfires across Montana." … Continue Reading


'The West is burning.' Daines, Feinstein testify on Emergency Wildfire Act

In a political era when Republicans and Democrats rarely agree on anything, the catastrophic wildfire season now raging across the American west could prove compelling enough to rally bipartisan support for legislation to change how forests are managed. That is the hope of Sens. Steve Daines and Dianne Feinstein; one a Montana Republican the other a California Democrat, who on Wednesday spoke in common support of the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act, a bill that would substantively alte… Continue Reading


'Nothing left in the bucket': Wildfire resources run thin

Justin Silvera came off the fire lines in Northern California after a grueling 36 straight days battling wildfires and evacuating residents ahead of the flames. Before that, he and his crew had worked for 20 days, followed by a three-day break. Silvera, a 43-year-old battalion chief with Cal Fire, California's state firefighting agency, said he's lost track of the blazes he's fought this year. He and his crew have sometimes been on duty for 64 hours at a stretch, their only rest coming in 20-mi… Continue Reading


Daines wildfire bill would speed forestry work

Smoke from the West Coast wildfires helped set the stage for a Washington, D.C., hearing on a new wildfire and forest management bill backed by U.S. Sen. Steve Daines of Montana. "The West is burning, people are dying, and the smoke is literally starting to cover our country," Republican Daines said during a hearing of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Wednesday. "Our way of life as we know it is in danger." California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein partnered with Daines t… Continue Reading

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