In The News

08.14.20

Treatment Court members discuss how to navigate COVID-19 challenges

HELENA - Members of Montana's treatment court program met for the first time since the start of the pandemic at the Helena American Legion to discuss the best ways to get Montanans help during these isolated times. Representatives from Great Falls and Missoula treatment courts were in attendance to discuss concerns of COVID-19 and its impact on Montanans participating in treatment court programs. "The ones that came into the program right before the pandemic, we just don't have that by in with… Continue Reading


08.10.20

MT Congressional delegation condemns U.S. Postal Service delays

HELENA - As the U.S. Postal Service faces another funding crisis, Montana's congressional delegation is united in its condemnation of moves by President Trump's new postmaster general to delay mail service. The delegation's two Republicans - U.S. Sen. Steve Daines and U.S. Rep. Greg Gianforte - wrote letters to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy last week, demanding he reverse new policies that will delay mail delivery. And Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester had even stronger words, saying DeJoy want… Continue Reading


08.07.20

Congress urges Postal Service to undo changes slowing mail

(AP) - Lawmakers from both parties are calling on the U.S. Postal Service to immediately reverse operational changes that are causing delays in deliveries across the country just as big volume increases are expected for mail-in election voting. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said Thursday that changes imposed by the new, Republican postmaster general "threaten the timely delivery of mail - including medicines for seniors, paychecks for workers and absentee… Continue Reading


08.07.20

Daines’ bipartisan bill prioritizes forest management to prevent wildfires

U.S. Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) on Aug. 4 introduced bipartisan legislation that would increase wildfire preparedness and response throughout the United States. "We must manage our forests, so they don't manage us," Sen. Daines said. The senator signed on as the lead original cosponsor of the untitled S. 4431, which is sponsored by U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), to provide the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) with the necessary tools to protect communities from wildfires, according to a bill summa… Continue Reading


08.07.20

Daines urges Postmaster General to rescind delayed mail directive; medications vital

Sen. Steve Daines this week urged the nation's postmaster general to reverse a decision to hold mail for a full day if distribution is running behind. The U.S. Postal Service is facing a projected $13 billion revenue deficit and Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has made a number of moves to shore up funding, including the elimination of overtime pay for postal workers. DeJoy, a former Republican Party fundraiser, also issued a directive to hold mail for delivery until the next day for any pieces… Continue Reading


08.06.20

Congress urges Postal Service to undo changes slowing mail

(AP) - Lawmakers from both parties are calling on the U.S. Postal Service to immediately reverse operational changes that are causing delays in deliveries across the country just as big volume increases are expected for mail-in election voting. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said Thursday that changes imposed by the new, Republican postmaster general "threaten the timely delivery of mail - including medicines for seniors, paychecks for workers and absentee… Continue Reading


08.06.20

Feds open Billings office to solve missing Indigenous people cold cases

A federal task force to investigate cold cases involving missing and murdered Indigenous people opened an office Thursday in Billings. This was the third of seven offices of Operation Lady Justice Task Force, Tara Katuk Sweeney, assistant secretary of Indian Affairs, said. President Donald Trump established the Operation Lady Justice Task Force on Nov. 26, a multi-agency effort co-chaired by U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt and U.S. Attorney General William P. Barr. It will focu… Continue Reading


08.06.20

Bureau of Indian Affairs Cold Case Team Office opens in Billings

BILLINGS- A Bureau of Indian Affairs Cold Case Team Office was opened in Billings that will be dedicated to reanalyzing and investigating cases of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons. This office is the third of seven offices established under the Operation Lady Justice Task Force to investigate cold cases involving missing and murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives. The cold case teams will be staffed with law enforcement personnel and newly appointed special agents from the Bureau … Continue Reading


08.06.20

Montana lawmakers push for census deadline extension, urge completion

MISSOULA, Mont. - Montana politicians are urging the U.S. Census Bureau to reconsider a new deadline to end data collection, which is one month earlier than planned. The announcement came Monday, with the bureau saying field data collection will stop Sept. 30 to meet an end-of-year deadline. Gov. Steve Bullock and Lt. Gov. Mike Cooney sent a letter to the U.S. commerce secretary urging the Census Bureau to stick with the original extended October deadline. They say 525,000 Montanans haven't ye… Continue Reading


08.06.20

Daines co-sponsors bill to reduce wildfire, halt 'frivolous' environmental lawsuits

Montana Sen. Steve Daines has introduced new legislation meant to reduce the risk of large wildfires on federally managed lands, and to make it harder for environmental groups to halt permitted timber harvests by obtaining federal court injunctions. Daines announced his submission of the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act during a news briefing on Wednesday, describing it as "a major bi-partisan breakthrough" in the effort to reform forest management practices. "This is a Democrat from C… Continue Reading


08.05.20

Daines Works with Dianne Feinstein on new Forest Safety Act

Fresh off his success in passing the Great American Outdoors Act which was signed by President Trump on Tuesday, Senator Steve Daines resumed work on yet another Forest Management bill along with California Democrat Dianne Feinstein. The bill is called the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020, and with the fatal fires that have occurred in California and that have destroyed millions of acres of Montana forests, Daines explained the bill. "It's about addressing the four 'W's', wildf… Continue Reading


08.05.20

Daines, Feinstein introduce wildfire protection bill

Montana Republican Sen. Steve Daines and California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein introduced a bipartisan bill Tuesday aimed at protecting communities by increasing forest management and reducing environmental litigation. The Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020 would grant broad authority to federal agencies to push fuels reduction projects, create a new center providing training on prescribed fire and allow projects to proceed while agencies consult over species listed under th… Continue Reading


08.04.20

‘A Conservationist’s Dream’ Come True

With the stroke of President Donald Trump's pen, the biggest land conservation legislation in a generation became law Tuesday morning, prompting widespread praise on a measure that sets a new standard of stewardship for public lands. The bill, called the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA), authorizes billions in funding for two major conservation needs - the National Park Service deferred maintenance backlog and the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The House approved the bill 310-107 on July 2… Continue Reading


08.04.20

President signs Great American Outdoors Act

President Donald Trump signed a bipartisan bill Tuesday that will spend nearly $3 billion on conservation projects, outdoor recreation and maintenance of national parks and other public land. The Great American Outdoors Act was hailed as the most significant conservation legislation enacted in nearly half a century. "For more than 50 years Congress has struggled to fund land and water conservation, leading to a never ending backlog of maintenance and other critical needs in our parks and publi… Continue Reading


08.04.20

Trump signs landmark Great American Outdoors Act

President Trump signed a bipartisan bill on Tuesday that will pay for repairs at national parks, permanently finance the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and create thousands of jobs. The investment under the Great American Outdoors Act, heralded as the most significant conservation bill in a generation, is the biggest for parks since President Theodore Roosevelt's administration in the early 1900s, he said. "We are proving that we can protect [our] treasured environment without bludgeo… Continue Reading


08.04.20

Daines Thanks Trump for Signing Great American Outdoors Act

At a White House ceremony on Tuesday, President Donald Trump signed the Great American Outdoors Act into law. Montana Senator Steve Daines, who along with fellow Senator Jon Tester and Congressman Greg Gianforte helped shepherd the bipartisan conservation bill through Congress and to the President's desk. Daines addressed the President from the podium at the White House. "Thank you, Mr. President," said Daines. "This really is a great day for Montana. This is a great day for America. This is … Continue Reading


08.04.20

Montana delegation celebrates signing of Great American Outdoors Act

The Great American Outdoors Act is now the law of the land. The act has been touted by conservation and access groups as one of the largest pieces of conservation legislation to pass in decades. The bipartisan bill fully funds the Land and Water Conservation Fund at $900 million annually and makes the allocation permanent in the budget. The bill also generates roughly $9.5 billion to finance backlogged maintenance on federal lands, including national parks, wildlife refuges, national forest and… Continue Reading


08.04.20

President Trump signs landmark conservation funding bill

Following decades of political wrangling, federal leaders are finally able to wrap up permanent financing of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, with President Trump signing legislation on Tuesday morning. It was 35 years ago this month President Regan asked a special commission to look into a permanent way to fund conservation and public lands programs. But the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) -- which is paid for through revenues from oil and gas leasing -- has continued to be a pol… Continue Reading


08.03.20

Cassidy, Daines propose additional family-focused, pandemic-relief payments for Americans

U.S. Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Steve Daines (R-MT) on July 30 led the introduction of a Republican bill that would provide supplementary 2020 recovery rebates to eligible individuals. "Much of the burden of the pandemic has fallen on parents and children," Sen. Cassidy said. "This legislation prioritizes their needs by providing resources for school supplies, childcare and other unexpected expenses." Sen. Cassidy sponsored the Coronavirus Assistance for American Families Act, S. 4381, with… Continue Reading


08.03.20

Spectrum unveils plan for high-speed broadband in Cascade

A groundbreaking ceremony was recently held to celebrate the upcoming launch of high-speed broadband in Cascade. The launch, planned for later this year, will include Spectrum Internet, with starting internet speeds of 100 Mbps in addition to Spectrum Internet Gig for residential customers and Spectrum Business Internet Gig for small and medium-sized business clients in Cascade, company officials said. Montana has among the slowest broadband access speeds in the country.A Spectrum spokeswoman … Continue Reading

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