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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Daines Sounds Off On Cabin Fees, Cyber Attacks

Edward O'Brien

A group of Montanans who own cabins on Forest Service land thanked Republican Senator-elect Steve Daines today for a measure they say will allow them to keep those cherished cabins in their families.

Some cabin fees spiked from $5,000 to $20,000 within just a few years.

The Cabin Fee Act establishes a predictable fee-setting system for at least 700 Montana cabin owners.

The bill was included in the lands and resources legislation recently approved by Congress as a rider on a Defense spending bill.

Daines says the Forest Service's appraisal system was out-of-whack.

"They had a formula, did some reappraisals, and it resulted in some cases of five-times the fees. These cabin users are not opposed to paying the fees, they're not opposed to seeing increases, but what they want is something equitable and fair."

More on the Cabin Fee Act tomorrow on Montana Public Radio.

Sony Pictures Cyber Attack

Montana's Republican Senator elect  says the cyber terrorism-campaign against Sony Pictures Entertainment is clearly a serious matter.

When he was in the House, Steve Daines sat on a Cyber Security subcommittee. Daines also cut his teeth in the world of cloud computing by investing in, and eventually joining, a once-small tech startup called RightNow Technologies.

"We don't let it slide. We've got to get down to where these threats are coming from, put faces and names to the originators of these threats and take all action needed to bring these people to justice."

A group calling itself Guardians of Peace has escalated its hack attacks by threatening 9/11-like violence against movie theaters scheduled to show the Sony film "The Interview"; a comedy about two reporters recruited to kill North Korea's leader. 

Federal investigators now believe there's a link between the cyber attacks and North Korea.

Daines says the attacks present a very-real threat to the United States.

Daines says it's too soon to start talking about specific retaliatory action.

O’Brien first landed at Montana Public Radio three decades ago as a news intern while attending the University of Montana School of Journalism. His first career job out of school was covering the 1995 Montana Legislature. When the session wrapped up, O’Brien was fortunate enough to land a full-time position at the station as a general assignment reporter. Feel free to drop him a line at
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