Government & Politics

By United States Fish and Wildlife Service [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Montana officials are moving ahead toward finalizing its rules for the state’s medical marijuana industry despite the cloud of uncertainty raised after U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded an Obama Administration memo that kept federal prosecutors from pursuing marijuana cases in states where pot is legal.

Lawmakers were given an update on on the Montana Medical Marijuana Act during a meeting of Children, Families, Health and Human Services Interim Committee hearing at the state Capitol.


Senator Steve Daines hosting a tele-town hall on Tuesday, January 16th
Senator Steve Daines / Facebook

As Congressional Democrats and Republicans continue to fight over the fate of undocumented immigrants in the DACA program, the federal government is barreling towards a shutdown Friday.

Yellowstone Public Radio’s Nate Hegyi sat down with Montana’s Republican Senator, Steve Daines, to talk about the potential for a shutdown, his legislative goals in 2018 and President Trump’s salty language.

Nate Hegyi / YPR

Montana Democratic Senator Jon Tester wants immigration officials to tell Congress when they eavesdrop on cell phone conversations. His proposal is part of the Department of Homeland Security’s 2018 budget, which is still under consideration in Congress. 

Montana Office of Tourism and Business Development

The fund Montana lawmakers approved during the 2017 Legislature to accept donations to purchase easements to landlocked public land has reached just over $50,000, according to the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation. State officials are working to grow that fund so they can ink the first agreement later this year. 


Nate Hegyi / YPR

President Trump and members of Congress are trying to strike a deal over border security and the fate of undocumented immigrants under the DACA program. But on Wednesday a judge put a temporary hold on Trump’s plan to end DACA in March.

The president met with a bipartisan group of lawmakers before the ruling this week, including Montana Democratic Senator Jon Tester.  He spoke with Yellowstone Public Radio’s Nate Hegyi after the meeting about border walls, weed, and his top priorities for 2018.

Nate Hegyi / YPR

When low-income people need help getting food stamps, Medicaid and other benefits, they often go to Montana’s public assistance offices. But at the end of this month, more than half of these offices will permanently close because of state budget cuts. This includes one in Livingston, which serves more than 300 people every month.

A photo shared on Twitter by Matt Rosendale in October 2017 / Twitter

A candidate for U.S. Senate in Montana who received an endorsement by former White House strategist Steve Bannon is keeping quiet after Bannon made comments critical of President Trump.

Jackie Yamanaka

Thanks to the 2017 Montana Legislature, it is no longer illegal to start up your vehicle and leave it running  unattended while the engine warms up.  It's a common sight during the winter.


Private contractors who take care of Montanans with developmental disabilities are losing state contracts due to Montana’s budget woes. This means many case managers across the state are losing their jobs, and small town service providers are grappling with how to provide care on a reduced budget.

Jackie Yamanaka

Kathleen Williams, Democratic candidate for the U.S. House, says the government is close to broken.  But instead of continuing to grouse about the hyper-partisanship in Congress, she says she wants to try to fix the problem. 

That wouldn't be the first time. 

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