MTPR

Austin Knudsen

Montana Senate President Scott Sales, left, and House Speaker Austin Knudsen, both Republicans, are on opposite sides of the call for a special session
Corin Cates-Carney


Montana lawmakers have a little less than two weeks to decide whether to come back to Helena for a special legislative session, potentially the second in eight months.

“It’s going to be a very heavy lift to get the 76 votes,” Senate President Scott Sales said.

Montana Capitol in Helena.
William Marcus

Republican state lawmakers are debating whether to call a special session of the Montana Legislature this July.

Republicans hold enough seats in the state Legislature to call a special session without any support from Democrats. But to do so, they need at least 76 of their 90 plus members in the Legislature to agree to it.

Montana Capitol dome, Helena.
William Marcus

A Republican-led legislative committee is investigating state settlements paid out to public employees under the administration of Democratic Governor Steve Bullock. The Special Select Committee on State Settlement Accountability held its first meeting via phone conference Wednesday.

Office of the governor, budget and program planning.
William Marcus

The maneuvering to fix the state budget is still playing out following the special session earlier this month as some key pieces have yet to slide into place.

Lawmakers left the state Capitol about a week and a half ago with a package of bills that filled the state's projected $227 million budget shortfall. As a result of some of that work, Governor Steve Bullock announced Monday that state’s credit rating remains strong.

Sally Mauk: Welcome to a special edition of "Capitol Talk" our political analysis program I'm Sally Mauk And I'm joined by University of Montana Political Science Professor Rob Saldin and veteran Capitol Reporter Chuck Johnson.

Chuck, the Legislature met in special session for three days this week to deal with a $227 million budget shortfall. And they've come up with a combination of cuts and transfers and fees to deal with it but not with any new tax increases as the governor had proposed. Republicans of course control the House and Senate, and Chuck they got a lot of what they wanted out of this special session.

Pages