Montana Public Radio

The Session

Mondays at 7:50 a.m.

The campaign rhetoric, struggles for political power and results of the 2020 election converge in the 67th meeting of the Montana Legislature. Join us Monday mornings for The Session -- a breakdown of the latest action we’re watching in the statehouse, produced by Montana Public Radio, Yellowstone Public Radio and Montana Free Press.

The Session Week 16: Separation Of Powers And The Future Of Colstrip

Apr 19, 2021

As of mid-day Friday, 1,297 bills have been introduced and at least 197 have been signed into law. This week we’re watching a mounting dispute over separation of powers between the Legislature and the Montana Supreme Court. We’re also watching debate on a bill that would incentivize the state’s largest utility to buy more of the Colstrip coal-fired power plant.

The Session Week 15: Parental Rights And Competing Tax Bills For Recreational Marijuana

Apr 12, 2021

As of mid-day Friday, 1,282 bills had been introduced and at least 153 had been signed into law. This week we’re watching the ideological split within the GOP over recreational marijuana taxes, proposed changes to social safety net eligibility and parental rights.

The Session Week 14: Piecing The Budget Puzzle Together

Apr 5, 2021

As of mid-day Friday, 1,271 bills had been introduced and at least 135 had been signed into law. This week we’re watching how lawmakers are piecing the budget puzzle together. Major questions remain over new taxes cuts, funding state agencies, what to do with federal stimulus and recreational marijuana. Much of this work is under a Thursday deadline for appropriation and revenue bills, including regulations for marijuana, to move from one chamber to the other.

The Session Week 13: Judges, Elections And Recreational Marijuana

Mar 29, 2021

As of mid-day Friday, 1,237 bills had been introduced and at least 74 had been signed into law. We’re hitting the time of the session when more are on the way. This week we’re watching the legal marijuana bill take shape, lawmakers consider the former governor’s district court judge nominees, and proposals to change elections in the state.

The Session Week 12: Budget In The House, Windfall Of Federal Cash, Rules For Marijuana

Mar 22, 2021

As of mid-day Friday, 1,183 bills have been introduced and 60 have been signed into law. This week we’re watching the state budget, recreational marijuana and bills that would carry impacts for LGBTQ people.

The Session Week 11: State Budget Takes Shape And Marijuana Regulation Coming Soon

Mar 15, 2021

As of mid-day Friday, 1,148 bills had been introduced and Gov. Greg Gianforte 54 had been signed into law.

This week we’re starting to see the state budget take shape; recreational marijuana regulations are coming soon; and Democrats try again with tax changes as Republican plans move forward.

The Session Week 10: We’re Halfway There

Mar 8, 2021

As of mid-day Thursday 1,121 had been introduced and Gov. Greg Gianforte had signed 38 bills into law.

This week we’re breaking down what made it across the transmittal deadline, what failed and where the session is going next.

The Session Week 9: Transmittal Log Jam

Mar 1, 2021

As of midday Friday 1,128 bills had been introduced and Gov. Gianforte had signed 28 into law.

The Legislature faces a Wednesday, March 3 deadline for general policy bills from the House to make their way to the Senate, and vice versa. Bills that appropriate money can still be introduced.

This week, we’re watching bills ‘in the balance’ -- they need to get across to the other chamber to stay in play.

The Session Week 8: Taxes, Public Health And Labor Unions

Feb 22, 2021

As of midday Friday 918 bills had been introduced and Gov. Greg Gianforte had signed three bills into law. This week we’re watching legislation on tax policy, public health and labor unions.

As of mid-day Friday 731 bills have been introduced, and Gov. Greg Gianforte has signed 2 bills into law. This week, we’re watching bills about vaccines, Colstrip, and public assistance programs.

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