2017 MT Legislature

'Cash Bill' Would Fund Veterans’ Home And University Renovations

Apr 14, 2017

The Senate gave final approval today to a bill that would fund capital projects, like university system renovations and a veterans’ home in Butte, with money from state special revenue funds, grants and donations. 

Montana’s utility regulators failed Thursday in an attempt to push forward their top priority of the legislative session — changing the law to limit how much of the costs of electricity supply NorthWestern Energy can pass onto its customers.

Montana Legislature Passes More Than A Dozen Bills Thursday

Apr 14, 2017

The Montana Legislature is taking a break this weekend after passing more than a dozen bills today. The Legislature has only two scheduled weeks left in the 90-day session.

House Bill 473 would impose the first increase to Montana’s gas tax increase since the early 1990s, when the tax was raised to the current charge of 27 cents per gallon.

The new tax proposed by the House, in March, calls for an additional 8 cent tax increase per gallon of gas. But that was too high for the Senate. So, this week the Senate passed a compromise: 4.5 cents per gallon, going up to 6 cents by 2023.

Bill Would Prohibit Abortions After Five Months Of Pregnancy

Apr 13, 2017

HELENA — The Montana House gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a bill that would make it illegal for physicians to perform abortions after five months of pregnancy.

Senate Bill 329 provides an exception for medical emergencies that threaten the life of the mother. The House passed the bill on a 60-40 vote, and will hold a final vote Thursday.

A proposal for a new kind of rainy-day fund to protect Montana from future boom and bust swings in the state budget passed out of a House committee Wednesday.

Lawmakers are considering a change to how the state saves money, creating a new system allowing the state to react more quickly when it faces a shortfall in revenue.

Montana Lawmakers Reject New Constitutional Protections For Hunting, Fishing And Trapping

Apr 13, 2017

The Montana House of Representatives killed a bill today that would have asked voters to make hunting, fishing and trapping a Constitutional right. Senate Bill 236 passed the Senate on a 30-to-20 vote back in March.

Jackie Yamanaka

Jackie Yamanaka

The Senate Minority Leader added an amendment to one of the infrastructure bills working its way through the process that seeks to keep alive construction of a Southwest Montana Veterans Home.


Tobacco Tax Increase Dies In The House

Apr 12, 2017

An attempt to revive a substantial increase in the tobacco tax failed in the Montana House of Representatives.

Representative Kerry White said this tax increase, which included a $1.50-tax-per-pack increase for cigarettes just further creates a black market for cigarettes.

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