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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Gov. Gianforte Vetoes Two 'Redundant' Pandemic-Related Bills

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte vetoed two pandemic-related public health bills Friday, calling them redundant.

One of the bills would have allowed citizen initiatives to amend or appeal local health board actions. In his veto, Gov. Gianforte said other legislation accomplished the goal of limiting what he called “isolated instances of overreach by local public officials during the pandemic.”

Gianforte cited one new law that gives local elected officials oversight of health officers and local boards of public health. Another prohibits local public health orders that would require businesses to turn away customers.

Gianforte also vetoed a bill that would have established a commission examining whether state and local restrictions or suspension of laws and regulations during the pandemic benefited Montanans. Gianforte said his administration is already examining every state agency with an eye toward eliminating “excessive, outdated and unnecessary regulations.”

Aaron graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Journalism in 2015 after interning at Minnesota Public Radio. He landed his first reporting gig in Wrangell, Alaska where he enjoyed the remote Alaskan lifestyle and eventually moved back to the road system as the KBBI News Director in Homer, Alaska. He joined the MTPR team in 2019. Aaron now reports on all things in northwest Montana and statewide health care.
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