Economy & Business

Lake County is updating its growth policy plan this summer. Tuesday, county planners hosted the last of five public meetings to hear what local residents think should be addressed in the plan due later this fall.

The county hosted a slew of open houses over the past two weeks to hear what local residents think about development, land use and protecting natural and cultural resources as Lake County continues to grow.

Montana’s health insurance companies are asking for rate increases for 2018 ranging from 2 percent to 23 percent. Those numbers released today are much lower than the rate increases for last year, some of which topped 50 percent.

The proposed increases are only for the individual and small group markets. Most Montanans get their health coverage elsewhere, either through their jobs or government programs like Medicaid, Medicare and the Veterans Administration.

One Big Sky Center

The Billings City Council will hold a special 5 p.m. meeting tonight at City Hall to discuss the proposed $165 million One Big Sky Center downtown.

MontDevCo LLC, the developer of the 70,000 square feet project, seeks up to $35 million in tax increment financing: also known as TIF, this is a kind of city-sanctioned loan, funded by public tax dollars, that shields borrowers for a certain number of years from area tax increases.

Lockheed Martin Photo

The future USS Billings has a big day on Saturday, July 1, 2017,  with its christening and launch ceremony at its shipyard in Marinette, Wisconsin. It will be the first ship commissioned by the U.S. Navy to have been named for Montana’s largest city.


Governors from the western U.S. converge on Whitefish this week for the annual Western Governors Association. Monday, they talked about international trade agreements between the U.S. and Canada. 

The round table discussion between 10 western governors, a Canadian ambassador, and the premier of Saskatchewan, began with a question about the ongoing softwood lumber trade dispute between the two countries.

Transportation Security Administration agents at Logan Airport's Terminal C in Boston snapped to attention Sunday, when they came across a live 20-pound lobster lurking in a cooler among the checked luggage.

"The lobster was screened and allowed to continue on its way," TSA spokesman Michael McCarthy tells NPR in an email.

He tweeted about it Monday saying, "@TSA officers are skilled at screening all sorts of items in checked baggage...including this 20+ pound lobster at @BostonLogan."

Google will no longer scan emails in Gmail accounts in order sell targeted advertising, the company said Friday.

The governors of Montana and other western states are meeting Monday with Canadian leaders to talk about economic development between the two countries.

The meeting between state and provincial leaders comes as the U.S. and Canada are battling over softwood lumber trade.

Affordable housing is becoming increasingly hard to find in Whitefish, as second homeowners, mostly from out of state, scoop up real estate and landlords turn their usual long-term rentals into vacation rentals. For people working the low-wage service industry jobs that sustain the area’s tourism economy, there aren’t a lot of options.

Two of the people who were critically injured when a deck collapsed at a church camp on the west side of Flathead Lake Saturday are now classified as in good condition at Kalispell Regional Medical Center.

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