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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Montana officials plan to divest from Russian holdings, following other states

Montana Capitol, Helena, MT.
William Marcus
Montana Public Radio
Montana Capitol, Helena, MT.

Montana officials are planning to pull the state’s Russian-linked investments due to political and financial upheaval caused by the invasion of Ukraine.

The Montana Board of Investments holds about $15 million in assets tied to Russia, out of a $25 billion portfolio.

“Six-ten-thousandths of one percent is reflective of any Russian interests,” says Dan Villa, the executive director of the Montana Board of Investments. He says it’s fiscally responsible to pull the assets given the economic blows Russia is experiencing.

“We’re going to take a very deliberate approach to this. We’re going to exit these assets in a way that causes the least amount of harm.”

Montana follows several other states looking to divest from Russia.

Gov. Greg Gianforte sent a memo to state leaders Wednesday saying divestment has begun and Montana “will not support Russia’s war against Ukraine through our assets or operations.”

When asked about the governor’s personal financial assets, spokesperson Brooke Stroyke said they’re held in a blind trust managed without his advice, direction or consent. Gianforte amassed his personal wealth as a tech entrepreneur before entering politics.

Shaylee covers state government and politics for Montana Public Radio. Please share tips, questions and concerns at 406-539-1677 or  
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