The Latest from the Montana Legislature

Jackie Yamanaka

Attempt To Revive Bonding Bill Fails As Lawmakers Enter Final Week

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives rejected an attempt to revive a bonding measure that would pay for public school building projects, university buildings on 3 campuses, and help the Southwest Montana Veterans Home break ground. Representative Mike Cuffe, R-Eureka, offered a technical motion to suspend the rules to reconsider his House Bill 645 . It failed April 6 , 2017 to get the votes necessary to be transmitted to the Senate.

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(Flickr/Kellie Parker) (https://flic.kr/p/mCKgS)

After months of drafting and amending, the Associated Students of the University of Wyoming passed a much debated resolution to fly a flag symbolizing LGBTQ visibility, strength and allyship.

ASUW Vice President Tyler Wolfgang got the idea to fly the flag on campus after a gunman opened fire at a LGBTQ nightclub in Florida and killed 49 people last summer.

"I felt trapped in Laramie working in ASUW when there was no one in the community talking about what happened in Orlando," said Wolfgang. "So I felt that a significant way of showing solidarity and inclusion for the LGBTQ  community during Pride Month—which is in June—in Laramie was well needed."

MT Legislature

The chair of the Montana Republican Party announced today his candidacy for mayor of the state’s largest city. YPR's Jackie Yamanaka caught up with Jeff Essmann, as he’s also a legislator who’s served in both the Senate and House.

 

 

 

          

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Jay Hahnkamp is an unlikely children’s author. He’s a rancher with a small place near southwest Montana, and he has two children’s books to his name.

His most recent book carries a simple message: no matter the obstacles in life, a child can strive to be whatever he or she wants to be. This message is carried by the author’s real-life cow and best friend the goat.  


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Jackie Yamanaka

Capitol Connections: Final Days of Negotiations

The 65th Session of the Montana Legislature is winding down, but there are pieces yet to be put into place before lawmakers can adjourn. Senate Majority Leader Fred Thomas, R-Stevensville, talks about the negotiations taking place with the Governor to bring this session to a close.

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The Trump administration announced it will impose a 20 percent tariff on imported softwood lumber from Canada.

The dispute is not new — the United States and Canada have sparred over imports of forest products for decades. But the action comes as the two nations prepare to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, which President Trump has harshly criticized.

Several Democrats joined Republicans in the Senate to confirm former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue as the next secretary of agriculture.

The vote was 87 to 11. Perdue's cousin, Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., voted "present" and presided over the vote.

Sonny Perdue grew up on a farm in central Georgia and has owned several agriculture companies. He is not associated with the food company Perdue or the poultry producer Perdue Farms.

NPR's Geoff Bennett reports for our Newscast unit:

For only the third time ever, the government released today a national report card examining the knowledge, understanding and abilities of U.S. eighth-graders in visual arts and music.

And in many ways, the numbers aren't great, with little progress shown in most categories since the last time the assessment was given in 2008. One bright spot: The achievement gap between Hispanic students and their white peers has narrowed. But Hispanics and African-Americans still lag far behind white and Asian eighth-graders.

Jackie Yamanaka

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives rejected an attempt to revive a bonding measure that would pay for public school building projects, university buildings on 3 campuses, and help the Southwest Montana Veterans Home break ground.

Representative Mike Cuffe, R-Eureka, offered a technical motion to suspend the rules to reconsider his House Bill 645. It failed April 6, 2017 to get the votes necessary to be transmitted to the Senate.


As a hurry-up execution schedule plays out in Arkansas this week, the U.S. Supreme Court and Arkansas Supreme Court have stepped in to block two of the eight executions initially scheduled for an 11-day period.

In the 1950s, television producer Albert Freedman captivated audiences with his carefully crafted game show Twenty-One, which had been foundering before he helped turn it into the most popular program in the country.

Robert M. Pirsig, who inspired generations to road trip across America with his "novelistic autobigraphy," Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, died Monday at the age of 88.

His publisher William Morrow & Company said in a statement that Pirsig died at his home in South Berwick, Maine, "after a period of failing health."

Updated at 7:30 p.m. ET

An article on a State Department website about President Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort has been removed after criticism that it was an inappropriate use of taxpayer funds.

Critics complained that resources were being used to tout the for-profit club, which Trump refers to as the Winter White House. The club, in Palm Beach, Fla., is held in Trump's trust, of which he is the sole beneficiary.

A Jewish advocacy organization expects a staggering increase in anti-Semitic incidents by the end of 2017. That projection comes after the Anti-Defamation League counted an 86 percent spike in attacks on Jews and Jewish institutions so far this year, according to a report released Monday.

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