Montana Public Radio

Kayla Desroches

Kayla Desroches reports for Yellowstone Public Radio in Billings. She was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, and stayed in the city for college, where she hosted a radio show that featured serialized dramas like the Shadow and Suspense. In her pathway to full employment, she interned at WNYC in New York City and KTOO in Juneau, Alaska. She then spent a few years on the island of Kodiak, Alaska, where she transitioned from reporter to news director before moving to Montana.

The three candidates in the Republican primary race for governor in Montana squared off at their first full debate Thursday night.

Each candidate tried to distinguish himself as the best Montanan to advocate for other Montanans.

Montana regulators say they expect to have $400 million in bonds in place by July to cover future cleanup costs at the Colstrip power plant.

 

But state lawmakers expressed skepticism over that time frame after regulators failed to meet previous deadlines to secure the money.

 

An environmental advocacy group released a report Jan. 9 arguing that the coal industry may crash and leave the public with the financial burden of the environmental cleanup of developed mining sites.

Montana has joined two dozen states and the District of Columbia in requiring all schools to test drinking water for lead.

Hearing sessions across Montana over the last month have given ratepayers of the state’s largest electric utility the chance to sound off on the company’s 20-year-plan for sourcing energy. While many people have lashed out against the fossil fuel heavy plan, a minority of supporters in Billings and Colstrip last week stepped up.

 

Two of the Colstrip power plant’s four units ceased operation last week. Residents in Colstrip voiced shock and sadness Saturday about the long-planned but still surprising shutdowns.

About 100 Flathead Valley area residents gathered in Kalispell’s Depot Park Tuesday, Dec. 17, calling for President Donald Trump’s removal ahead of the U.S. House’s vote on impeachment.
Aaron Bolton / Montana Public Radio

Ahead of Wednesday's U.S. House vote on articles of impeachment, several hundred Montanans rallied across the state Tuesday night both to defend the president and to call for his removal from office.

Correction December 12, 2019: This article has been updated to include that Sen. Jon Tester is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Environmental advocates and political leaders across Montana are pushing for full funding of the Land and Water Conservation Fund at $900 million, an amount the country hasn’t been close to since 1998.


A federal order that lumps electric bicycles in with traditional bikes has sparked concern among environmental advocacy groups who say that e-bikes could hurt trail traffic and ecology in the Pryor Mountains.


Amid constantly changing closure dates for a power plant majority owned by out-of-state companies, a town that found success through coal is coming to terms with the plant’s partial retirement. Kayla Desroches spent a day in Colstrip in southeast Montana to talk with some of the people who live and work in the community.

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