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Archive for date: April 12, 2021

Montana Small Businesses Earn Mixed Rankings For COVID Responses

With states gradually reopening but around 100,000 businesses having closed permanently during 2020, Wallet Hub today released its report on the states with the most pandemic-proof small businesses. Montana ranks 49th across 11 key metrics. Montana ranks 25th in small business friendliness, however, and 22nd in states whose weekly unemployment...

House Bill 602 Raises Concerns Over Solving Cold Cases

A bill that would require investigators to obtain a warrant to search consumers’ DNA databases like 23 and Me or Ancestry.com is drawing criticism from law enforcement representatives who say it would make it hard to solve cold cases. Austin Amestoy from the University of Montana Legislative News Service reports that Republican Represent...

MSU Billings To Host COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics

A legislative inquiry into the state court administrator’s emails which recent revelations have shown to contain judges’ polls on pending legislation and were deleted from the administrator’s account has been dealt a blow by the Montana Supreme Court. The high court said a subpoena was too broad. Montana State University Billings is hosting CO...

Bill Limiting Stimulus Grants Passes Through The House

A proposal in the Montana Legislature to reduce some federal stimulus grants to local governments with stricter COVID-19 regulations than the state passed the House last week on a vote of 83 to 40. An amendment to remove the measure from House Bill 632 reducing funds to some local governments failed. It’s expected there will be clarifica...

Pictograph Cave State Park Reopens

Pictograph Cave State Park southeast of Billings will reopen Wednesday, April 14, 2021, two months after it was closed by a rockfall that blocked the access road and several trails. Since the January rockfall, Montana State Parks employees and contractors have worked to clear the road and trails and access the threat of future rockfalls from t...

Wolf Trapping Season And Requirements Expanded

Governor Greg Gianforte has signed bills allowing snares to be used for the trapping of wolves and lengthening Montana’s trapping seasons. Senate Bill 224 adds snares to the list of legal traps for wolves where previously only foothold traps were allowed. House Bill 225 extends wolf trapping seasons by two weeks earlier and two weeks later. Fi...

First 2021 Case Of Hantavirus Reported

Governor Greg Gianforte signed a law February 18th that expands where people can carry a concealed weapon. The Montana University System is looking to neighboring states and public input as it prepares to allow them on campuses statewide June 1st. The previous policy had been to ban firearms except for those carried by law enforcement while pr...

Park City County Health Officer Provides Coronavirus Update

Montana reported another 42 COVID-19 cases, but no new COVID-19 deaths in an update Sunday to the state case mapping and information website.  Active cases are at 1,100 statewide. Hospitals in the state are reporting 48 active COVID-19 hospitalizations. COVID-19 has caused the deaths of 1,523 Montanans. Park City-County Health officer Dr. Laur...