Adrian Sanchez-Gonzalez / MSU

An international team of scientists is a step closer to producing higher protein, better quality wheat and barley.   That’s a potential boon for Montana’s beleaguered farmers, hit by commodity prices so low in recent years many are wondering how they’re going to survive.

It all starts with Dr. Hikmet Budak, Montana State University’s first Plant Sciences Endowed Chair.  His endowed chair is the highest academic award a university can bestow on a faculty member.

 

Clint Peck lives with the mantra of, “Don’t say whoa in the middle of a mud hole.” Peck left cattle ranching to make wine, fermenting the dream at his Yellowstone Cellars and Winery in Billings, Mont. Tucked in a small industrial space on the West End of town, the winery will produce about 3,400 cases of wine this year.

Jackie Yamanaka

The Rocky Mountain Tribal Leaders Association unanimously endorsed Governor Steve Bullock during its quarterly meeting in Billings. 

Fort Belknap Tribal Chairman Mark Azure says the endorsement comes because of the Bullock Administration’s working relationship with the tribal governments.

“And we want to be recognized as a sovereign nation,” Azure says. “And I think governor Bullock gets that. My fear is the other folks don’t get that. I don’t think we here at the table can afford to see that other party fill those seats.”

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At the end of Monday night's presidential debate, Hillary Clinton accused Donald Trump of taunting one of his former Miss Universe contestants about her weight.

Clinton said the Republican nominee's criticisms of Alicia Machado, a Venezuelan who won the Miss Universe contest in 1996, was "one of the worst things he said" about women. "He called this woman Miss Piggy. Then he called her Miss Housekeeping because she was Latina."

  Debate over transferring federal public lands to state ownership or management has largely dominated Montana’s U.S. House race between the main party candidates.

Across the country, some state lawmakers and members of Congress are pushing to transfer federal lands to state ownership or control, a movement that has gained traction and created some controversy.

Incumbent Republican Ryan Zinke and challenger Democrat Denise Juneau both say their stances on these issues are clear.

“I have always been a strong supporter of public lands and have voted against the transfer or sale of public lands," Zinke says. "My position is known and well established.”

Denise Juneau says, “I remain 100 percent opposed to any transfer of management or selling of American public lands.”

The candidates have sparred over whether votes Zinke has taken in Congress, or Juneau on the state’s land board are consistent with those statements.

Less talked about, though, is one case where the management of nearly 19,000 federally-managed acres in Northwest Montana could change hands.

Bertha Vazquez has taught earth science for more than twenty-five years.

"For many years I covered the basic standard, probably like most people in the country do."

Then one day she says she decided to throw all that out the window when she saw former Vice President Al Gore speak at the University of Miami at a screening of An Inconvenient Truth, his documentary about climate change.

"And it really ... hit me. This is 2007 and, I've got to tell you, I lost sleep," Vazquez says.

The U.S. is targeting a Chinese company and the people who run it for allegedly helping North Korea with its nuclear weapons program. It closely follows the North's fifth nuclear test, which took place earlier this month.

"Each new nuclear test...spurs this kind of scramble to do something," says John Delury, a professor of international relations at Seoul's Yonsei University. "And sanctions is the kind of preferred choice."

You could see the contrast in the eyes of the respective candidates' spokespersons, surrogates and family members after the first presidential debate of 2016 had wrapped.

As always, earnest efforts were made on both sides to claim victory — even insist on it — after the nationally televised clash between Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump.

"Trump was especially strong on the issues in the first 45 minutes," said former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski on CNN.

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  Debate over transferring federal public lands to state ownership or management has largely dominated Montana’s U.S. House race between the main party candidates.

Across the country, some state lawmakers and members of Congress are pushing to transfer federal lands to state ownership or control, a movement that has gained traction and created some controversy.

Incumbent Republican Ryan Zinke and challenger Democrat Denise Juneau both say their stances on these issues are clear.

“I have always been a strong supporter of public lands and have voted against the transfer or sale of public lands," Zinke says. "My position is known and well established.”

Denise Juneau says, “I remain 100 percent opposed to any transfer of management or selling of American public lands.”

The candidates have sparred over whether votes Zinke has taken in Congress, or Juneau on the state’s land board are consistent with those statements.

Less talked about, though, is one case where the management of nearly 19,000 federally-managed acres in Northwest Montana could change hands.

Evening Newscast 09-26-16

12 hours ago

Government investigators are due in Yellowstone National Park tomorrow to look into an employee's claims of sexual exploitation of female workers, and financial misconduct.

U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell says his agency is depending on partnerships with states and private organizations to manage 60 million acres in need of restoration because of staff and budget cuts.

Authorities say a man lured two women into a Montana-based sex trafficking scheme, and had just recruited three teenage girls from the Midwest before he was arrested.

A charitable foundation has established a major endowment with the University of Montana.

The Haynes Foundation has provided scholarship funds to UM before, but Monday's announcement of a $4 million permanent endowment is particularly significant.