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Montana Politics & Legislature

Keep up with the latest Montana politics, elections and Legislature news. Get updates on your radio during Morning and Evening Edition, on the web or via podcast any time.

Capitol Talk: MTPR's weekly legislative analysis program featuring Sally Mauk, Holly Michaels and Rob Saldin begins the first week of the legislative session.

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The Montana Supreme Court Wednesday struck down a 2015 state law allowing tax credits for donations to private religious schools.

The court’s 5-2 ruling voids the dollar-for-dollar tax credit, up to $150, which passed, largely along party lines, out of the 2015 Montana Legislature.

Farm field. File photo.
thinkreaction / iStock

Senator Steve Daines called the 2018 Farm Bill a win for Montana on a press call Wednesday morning.

"Agriculture is our number one economic driver in Montana," Daines said. "The important outcome of passing the Farm Bill is that it provides certainty for Montana farmers and Montana ranchers in difficult times."

Montana Court Overrules Attorney General On Easements

Dec 11, 2018
Montana's Attorney General Tim Fox. file photo.
Courtesy Montana DOJ

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — The Montana Supreme Court on Tuesday overruled Attorney General Tim Fox's legal opinion that the governor can't unilaterally approve large conservation easements and they must instead be authorized by the state Land Board.

Six of the seven justices on the state's high court signed the order siding with Gov. Steve Bullock, who argued that he doesn't need the Land Board's approval because conservation easements aren't land acquisitions. Justice Laurie McKinnon is the only justice who didn't sign.

Montana Senators Jon Tester and Steve Daines, with New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand at a press conference Tuesday.
Senator Jon Tester's office.

Both of Montana’s U.S. Senators are urging the Senate to pass the so-called Blue Water Veterans Act before the current Congress adjourns.

That bill would extend benefits to vets who served on ships during the Vietnam War who may have been exposed to Agent Orange. At present, only troops who served on land are eligible.

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