Montana Public Radio

Diane Sands

Ads about I-185 from Montanans Against Tax Hikes and Healthy Montana.
Montana Public Radio


I-185, the state ballot measure that would raise tobacco taxes in order to continue Montana’s Medicaid expansion, has state lawmakers from both parties concerned. 

More details on Governor Steve Bullock’s plan to restore parts of the state budget are expected this week.

On Tuesday, the state health department says it will issue a new rule that will restore a nearly 3 percent cut to how much it pays doctors, clinics and other health care providers who see Medicaid patients, retroactive to July 1 of this year. That’s two months ahead of when the department initially said providers could expect that rate restoration.

Sen. Diane Sands (D) SD-49
Mike Albans / Montana Public Radio

A group of Democratic state lawmakers say budget cuts to the state health department have created a public health emergency. They delivered a letter to legislative leaders and the governor Tuesday asking for emergency funding. 

In Missoula Monday, Montana Attorney General Tim Fox, left, joined Sen. Diane Sands, Gov. Steve Bullock and people who helped lawmakers update state sexual assault laws
Eric Whitney

Attorney General Tim Fox joined Governor Steve Bullock in Missoula today for a ceremony to sign six bills updating Montana’s sexual assault laws.

They posed with Missoula Democratic Senator Diane Sands, who carried two of the bills, the most prominent of which removes force from the definition of sexual assault.

Two Abortion Bills Remain In Montana Legislature

Apr 18, 2017
Montana Capitol
Eric Whitney

HELENA — There are two abortion bills still in play in the 2017 Montana Legislature.

Senate Bill 329, or the Montana Pain-Capable Unborn Child Act, would make it a felony for providers to perform abortions after about five months of pregnancy unless there’s a medical emergency. The bill needs one more vote to get to the governor’s desk.

Montana Lawmakers and state agency officials convened a 'meth summit' in Helena Saturday
Cal Reynolds

Montana’s ballooning meth epidemic is overwhelming state law enforcement, addiction treatment centers, and the criminal justice system.

That was the theme of the Montana Meth Summit - a bipartisan gathering of state lawmakers, agency officials, and members of the public held at the capitol on Saturday.

Crystal Methampetamine, or "meth."
File photo (PD)

Montana lawmakers from both sides of the aisle, along with state agency workers and members of the public convened in Helena Saturday with one big problem to discuss.

"Without question, everyone in here, in this room, every citizen in this state, every resident of my community is affected by methamphetamine."

Montana lawmakers are considering a bill that would require the state Board of Regents to adopt a policy on accepting money or other gifts for the state’s colleges and universities.

Both the University of Montana and Montana State University have benefited from multi-million dollar gifts that resulted in naming rights.


Supporters of a bill to create a so-called Montana Paycheck Transparency Act say it will help make sure men and women are paid equally for doing equal work.
seniorliving.org

Supporters of a bill to create a so-called Montana Paycheck Transparency Act say it will help make sure men and women are paid equally for doing equal work.

Diane Sands, a Missoula Democrat, introduced Senate Bill 217 Wednesday morning in the state Senate.

Public lands advocates flooded the state capitol this week and won a victory against privatization in Congress. What's fueling their increased intensity of late? With Ryan Zinke as Interior secretary, is development on public lands a bigger threat than privatization?

Faced with a revenue shortfall and an unwillingness to raise taxes, Montana's University System and other state agencies are preparing for some painful funding cuts.

And the Legislature spent time this week debating a ban on Sharia law in Montana courts. Find out why in this episode of "Capitol Talk".

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