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 State News    March 26, 2015 

Supreme Court upholds $150K restitution in securities fraud

HAMILTON (AP) — The Montana Supreme Court has upheld a $150,000 restitution award in a securities fraud case against a Hamilton pastor, but reversed his conviction for fraudulent practices and sent the case back to District Court for a new trial.... Full story

 State News    March 26, 2015 

Senate blasts Medicaid expansion bill to floor for debate

HELENA (AP) — Senators have voted to blast a Republican lawmaker's Medicaid expansion bill out of committee and to the floor for debate. The motion passed by a 28-22 vote on Thursday. Sen. Ed Buttrey of Great Falls introduced Senate Bill 405 last... Full story

 By LISA BAUMANN    State News    March 23, 2015

Barry Beachman convicted in '79 killing

HELENA (AP) — A bill signed by Montana's governor could pave the way to clemency for Barry Beach, who is serving a 100-year prison sentence for a 1979 murder he says he didn't commit. Gov. Steve Bullock signed the measure Friday after it passed... Full story

 State News    March 20, 2015

House defeats partial Medicaid-expansion bill

The Hi-Line delegation: Rep. Stephanie Hess, R-Havre, Rep. Bruce Meters, R-Box Elder, Rep. Mike Long, R-Malta, voted for the patrial bill. Rep. Roy Hollandsworth, R-Brady, voted yes. HELENA (AP) — The House of Representatives has narrowly rejected... Full story

 By ALISON NOON    State News    March 20, 2015

Bill to up highway speeds proposed in Legislature

 HELENA (AP) — Montana lawmakers on Friday heard the session's fourth proposal to increase highway speed limits. Republican Rep. Art Wittich proposed a ballot referendum Friday for voters to decide whether to raise highway speed limits by 5... Full story

 State News    March 20, 2015

UM student arrested for indecent exposure held on $125K bail

MISSOULA (AP) — Bail has been set at $125,000 for a 22-year-old University of Montana student accused of exposing himself to students at bus stops and elsewhere in Missoula County. Cole Francisco, of Missoula, was arraigned Friday on five counts... Full story

 By LISA BAUMANN    State News    March 19, 2015

House GOP continues to deny Democratic budget amendments

HELENA, (AP) — The Democratic governor had strong words for House Republicans on Thursday as they continued to shoot down Democratic attempts to restore programs and funding proposed in his biennial budget. Gov. Steve Bullock said the 100-plus... Full story

 State News    March 17, 2015

Montana House endorses tax credit for private school tuition

Reps. Stephanie Hess, R-Havre, Mike Lang, R-Malta, and Bruce Meyers, R-Box Elder, voted for the tax credit. Rep. Roy Hollandsworth, R-Brady voted no. HELENA (AP) — Montana representatives have given initial approval to a Republican proposal to... Full story

 State News    March 17, 2015

Senate panel kills bill to drug test some welfare applicants

HELENA (AP) — A Senate committee tabled a measure on Friday that would require certain welfare applicants to take drug tests in Montana. Lee Newspapers of Montana reported that the Republican-led Senate Public Health, Welfare and Safety Committee... Full story

 State News    March 13, 2015

Butte native joins Fox News as military contributor

BUTTE (AP) — Butte native Rob O'Neill, a retired Navy Seal who said he fired the shots that killed Osama bin Laden, has joined Fox News as a contributor. "It's incredibly rare to have someone in a television contributor role with his leadership... Full story

 State News    March 13, 2015

Montana study of federal-lands transfer dies in committee

HELENA — A House committee has rejected a proposed bill that would have studied the idea of the state taking over management of federal lands. House Bill 496, which would have created a "Transfer of Public Land Feasibility Task Force," failed to... Full story

 State News    March 13, 2015

Billings runway closed after single-engine plane crash lands

BILLINGS (AP) — The main runway at Billings Logan International Airport was closed for about 45 minutes Friday and two commercial flights were delayed after a single-engine airplane made a hard landing. Airport Operations Manager Shane Ketterling... Full story

 State News    March 13, 2015

Update: UM student Kole Swartz dies in accidental shooting

MISSOULA (AP) — Missoula County authorities say an 18-year-old University of Montana freshman has died in an accidental shooting. Sheriff T.J. McDermott says Kole Swartz died about 3 a.m. Sunday at a residence in Clinton after a firearm he was... Full story

 State News    March 13, 2015

4 family members get prison in Fort Peck corruption case

GREAT FALLS, Mont. (AP) — Four members of a Montana family have been sentenced to federal prison on charges related to the embezzlement of more than $132,500 from the town of Brockton on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation. Desiree Lambert — the tow... Full story

 State News    March 13, 2015

Officials investigating death at UM dorm

MISSOULA (AP) — The Missoula County coroner is investigating the death of a male student at a University of Montana residence hall. Campus police were notified of the death at Craig Hall at around 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Missoula police and the... Full story

 State News    March 10, 2015

Bill to ban texting while driving endorsed by House

Rep. G. Bruce Meyers voted for the ban. Reps. Stepahnie Hess, R-Havre, Roy Hollandsworth, R-Brady, and Mike Lang, R-Malta, voted no. HELENA (AP) — The state House has endorsed a bill that would ban texting while driving. The House voted 52-48 to... Full story

 State News    March 10, 2015

House panel hears bill to give counties say on bison

HELENA (AP) — Montana's Legislature is again considering whether county officials should have a say in the relocation of wild bison. Republican Sen. John Brenden of Scobey proposed Senate Bill 284 in the House Agriculture Committee Tuesday to... Full story

 By ALISON NOON    State News    March 6, 2015

Montana Senators hear mental health proposals

ALISON NOON HELENA (AP) — State senators heard on Friday a slate of bills to expand Montana's mental health care system, many of which overlap with the governor's plan. Three Republican proposals and two Democratic bills were heard in the Senate Fi... Full story

 State News    March 6, 2015

Lawsuits asks jduge's racist emails be released

BILLINGS (AP) — Attorneys for two journalists have filed a lawsuit seeking the disclosure of hundreds of racist and inappropriate emails from Montana's former Chief U.S. District Judge. The California Civil Rights Law Group filed the lawsuit... Full story

 By LISA BAUMANN    State News    March 6, 2015

Republicans give Medicaid expansion unfavorable report

HELENA (AP) — A Republican-led committee allowed nearly three hours of testimony in favor of a proposal to expand Medicaid to about 70,000 low-income Montanans before voting along party lines to give the bill an unfavorable report. Many of the... Full story

 State News    February 27, 2015

Montana Legislature midpoint: What's alive, what's dead

HELENA (AP) — A bill signed by Gov. Steve Bullock that increases basic entitlement funding for schools by $54 million highlights progress made by the Montana Legislature at the halfway mark of its 90-day session. Other major bills that are... Full story

 State News    February 27, 2015

Kalispell assisted living facility is closing

KALISPEL (AP) — Residents of an assisted living facility in Kalispell have been given 30 days to find a new place to live because the center is closing. Greenwood Village Assisted Living is home to 30 elderly and disabled residents. It will close... Full story

 State News    February 26, 2015

Bill easing penalty for guns at school dies in House

Hi-Line lawmakers: Reps. Stephanie Hess, R-Havre, Mike Lang, R-Malta, Roy Hollandsowrth, R-Brady, voted for the bill. Rep, Bruce Meyers, R-Box Elder, voted for it on the first go-round, but voted against it when it came back tot the floor. HELENA... Full story

 State News    February 26, 2015

Senate endorses campaign-reform bill requiring disclosure 

HELENA (AP) — Montana senators endorsed a measure Thursday that would require more disclosure surrounding campaign donations. Republican Sen. Duane Ankney's Senate Bill 289, which is backed by Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock, would require... Full story

 State News    February 24, 2015

Montana House kills repeal of death penalty on tie vote

HELENA (AP) — Representatives have voted down a bill that would end capital punishment in Montana. Members of the House of Representatives voted 50-50 on Monday to fail House Bill 370 on second reading. Three Democrats and 47 Republicans voted... Full story


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