MTPR

economy


A recent news article found that parts of Montana with more people who were not born in the state have higher job growth. Eric Dietrich wrote the story for Montana Free Press as one of the state’s only data reporters. He spoke with YPR News' Jess Sheldahl about how he takes data and turns it into stories for the Long Streets Project.

Northern Cheyenne tribal leadership and partners are striving to find solutions to unemployment from within the community.

Housing costs in Montana relative to the U.S. and other Western states.
BBER analysis of 2016 American Community Survey (1-year). / http://www.bber.umt.edu/pubs/seminars/2018/EconRpt2018.pdf

Housing prices in Montana continue to rise, but how affordable housing looks depends a lot on where you stand. Economists from the University of Montana are focusing on affordable housing in their annual series of economic outlook seminars. The first was in Helena Tuesday, nine more are scheduled across the state between now and mid-March.

Montana's outdoor recreation activities.
Outdoor Recreation And Montana's Economy report, Headwaters Economics.

A growing set of business owners, non-profits and agencies in Montana are trying to expand what we think of when we talk about the economic value of the outdoors here.

Marne Hayes is the executive director for Business for Montana’s Outdoors, a group that advocates for preserving Montana’s outdoor heritage. She says Montana itself — its rivers, forests and wide open spaces — offers a competitive advantage for attracting new businesses and a talented workforce to Montana.

Montana ranks 9th in the U.S. in terms of state personal income growth according to the latest comparison from the Pew Charitable Trusts.
Pew Charitable Trusts

A decade out from the Great Recession, personal incomes and wages are growing in Montana faster than most other places in the United States.

“It’s one of the top ten states with the strongest growth in total personal income, both over the ten years since the start of the Great Recession and over the past year,” says Barb Rosewicz, a project director with The Pew Charitable Trusts State Fiscal Health research team.

Governor Bullock releases the 2018 Labor Day report, September 4, 2018 in Helena. The report says Montana wages continue to grow but the state faces a looming worker shortage as Baby Boomers retire.
Corin Cates-Carney

Governor Steve Bullock says wages and personal income are growing in Montana. But a worker shortage is adding pressure to the state’s labor force.

The Bullock administration’s yearly report card on the state economy highlights Montana as having the 4th fastest wage growth among states in the last decade, along with real GDP growth over that time that outpaced the nation.

Cindy Smith of Holiday Inn Missoula; Bob-Be Sparks of Holiday Inn Missoula; Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins; Missoula Mayor John Engen; Erica Bouris and Jen Barile, both of IRC, discuss immigration on July 11, 2018 in Missoula.
Maxine Speier

Immigrant populations in Missoula are contributing hundreds of millions of dollars to the local economy each year. At a panel held in Missoula today the mayors of both Missoula and Helena talked about the economic benefits of welcoming refugees and immigrants.

Power plant at Colstrip, MT.
Beth Saboe / MontanaPBS

A new study funded in part by the coal industry says shutting down of Colstrip’s two newer, larger coal-fired electricity generators in the next decade could have a huge impact statewide.

Colstrip’s two older units, 1 and 2, will shut down no later than July 2022 because of a Clean Air Act lawsuit settlement. But the future of the newer units, 3 and 4, remains uncertain.

Coal train
(PD)

Attorney General Tim Fox’s office is cheering a ruling by a federal judge yesterday.

Butte, Montana, winter 2017.
Nora Saks

Montana is world famous for its pristine natural environment, but it’s also home to America’s largest Superfund site (in Butte) and numerous other wastelands of its industrial past. Over the years, various well-intentioned economic revivalists and snake oil salesmen have proposed solutions to alchemize mine waste into gold - first with the environmental restoration industry, now with bitcoin miners putting out shingles in historic hard rock mining towns. This series of stories will explore the Treasure State’s collapsed pride, and efforts to process its toxic shame and legacy into a new identity and economy.

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