MTPR

Nora Saks

Reporter

Nora Saks is a reporter and producer based in Butte, MT.

In addition to covering mostly Superfund news, she's the host and producer of Richest Hill, a podcast about the past, present and future of one of America's most notorious Superfund sites.

Learn more at www.buttepodcast.org

We're also very social: @buttepodcast on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Stay in touch: 978-996-5766 // nrv.saks@gmail.com

Mark Mariano does daily waterfowl observations rounds at the Berkeley Pit during migration season. October 2018.
Nora Saks / MTPR

With the fall bird migration now in full swing, the companies in charge of Butte’s Berkeley Pit are using their new and improved scientific bird-hazing program to keep birds away. This week, their program got put to the test.

Two years ago this November, Butte made national headlines when several thousand late-migrating snow geese landed on the Berkeley Pit, exhausted and died. The huge numbers overwhelmed the companies jointly in charge of managing the former open pit copper mine and their usual methods of hazing birds off the massive toxic lake it now contains. 

Voters in Belgrade, MT, Nov. 6 2018.
Nora Saks

MTPR reporters spent today talking to voters across western Montana. Nora Saks stopped by the Belgrade Events Center this afternoon where high school had just let out. Voting booths were set up in front of a trophy case and voters who had just cast their ballots shared what issues were on their mind.

Carter Anderson was helping transport voters to and from the Butte Civic Center in the golf cart, Nov. 6, 2018.
Nora Saks

We've had reporters talking to voters across much of Western Montana today including these who Nora Saks spoke to in Butte this morning.

Nora Saks: Heading towards the civic center in Butte, it's snowy, there are so many people here. The roads are really greasy but there's lots of people just flowing in. One of the major voting locations in Butte. I'm going to try to catch up with some people.

Butte locals took a close look at the master land use plan for the city's creek corridors at a meeting at Butte Brewing Company. November 1, 2018.
Nora Saks

When most people picture the Silver Bow Creek corridor in the middle of Butte, they think of a forgotten drainage ditch and an industrial wasteland.

But now, Atlantic Richfield, the BP-owned company in charge of cleaning it up, says they have a plan to turn it into a lush greenway, the likes of which could rival the Clark Fork River in downtown Missoula. With interwoven trails and wetlands, and parks and playgrounds beckoning families to hang out. A natural paradise and a center of activity.

Cindy Perdue-Dolan (L) a field representative with Senator Daines' office looks on as Sister Mary Jo MacDonald shows pictures of the historic Upper Silver Bow Creek corridor. Members of ROCC and Montana's Board of Investments are also pictured.
Nora Saks / MTPR

At sunrise on Halloween, the Butte Archives conference room was full of dozens of people dressed not in scary costumes - but in suits.

All of the major players who are brokering Butte’s final Superfund cleanup deal were there - including elected officials, top staff and attorneys from local and state government, Atlantic Richfield Company, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Josh Bryson is the operations project manager with Atlantic Richfield Company. He's pictured outside the company headquarters in Butte. October 30, 2018.
Nora Saks / MTPR

This week, Butte residents will get an up-close look at what the city’s major creek corridors could look like in the future, once the Superfund cleanup is finished. 

This summer and fall, the parties in charge of Butte’s Superfund cleanup have been holding a series of public workshops to design what the Silver Bow and Blacktail Creek corridors in the center of town will be used for after the cleanup is over. Now, they’re ready to unveil their comprehensive land use plan for the creek areas at a culminating workshop and presentation this week.

Headframe of the Original Mine in Butte, MT.
Nora Saks

This week, Butte residents will have another chance to influence the direction of the second Superfund-related health study currently underway. MTPR's Nora Saks has more on the public workshop coming up Tuesday night.

Every five years, the Environmental Protection Agency requires the parties responsible for Butte’s Superfund cleanup to conduct a health study and look at how well the cleanup is protecting locals from exposure to toxic heavy metals in the environment.

Jeremy Fleege (L), an environmental engineer with Montana Resources, and Matt Vincent (R), an environmental consultant for MR, at a Stop I-186 event at Butte Brewing Company, October 24, 2018.
Nora Saks / MTPR

Campaign contributions in the fight over Montana ballot initiative 186 have roughly doubled over the last month, most of that money is backing opponents of the initiative’s proposed new regulations on mining. MTPR's Nora saks reports from one of their events in Butte. 

Senator Jon Tester spoke about his record supporting Montana's veterans at a press conference in Butte. October 18, 2018.
Nora Saks / MTPR

On the day President Trump visited Missoula, his third to Montana to stump for Republican Senate-hopeful Matt Rosendale, his Democratic opponent, Sen. Jon Tester, was in Butte with veterans of all political stripes. 

President Donald Trump and Montana Republican Senate candidate Matt Rosendale at a July 5 campaign rally in Great Falls, MT.
Sally Mauk / MTPR

UPDATED 7:15 pm Wed. 10/17:  

Missoula International Airport issued this statement on parking and logistics: 

"Parking for the Presidential Visit will NOT be on Airport property.  It will be East of Northstar off Corporate way.  Shuttles from the remote parking area will start at 2:00 PM.  Please refrain from driving in front of the terminal unless picking up or dropping off passengers.

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