MTPR

Jonathan Windy Boy

Tonight on Capitol Talk: The state health department faces permanent job cuts; A sales tax proposal reappears at the Capitol; Sexual harassment allegations among lawmakers lead to a new anti-harassment policy; And with time running short, Gov. Bullock remains coy about his 2020 election plans.

Jonathan Windy Boy
Courtesy Montana Legislature

UPDATE: In an earlier version of this story, The Associated Press reported erroneously that former House Speaker Austin Knudsen and Senate President Scott Sales both confirmed the identity of the lawmaker. Sales said he knew who was the subject of the complaint, but did not publicly identify him as Rep. Jonathan Windy Boy. 

A Montana lawmaker says his constitutional rights have been violated after he was identified as the subject of a harassment complaint by a female legislator.

Rep. Jonathan Windy Boy (D), HD-32.
Mike Albans

A Montana legislator sent a female colleague harassing text messages in 2017 leading to his resignation as chairman of the state Tribal Relations Committee.

This information came to light today in an investigation reported by the Associated Press.

Rep. Jonathan Windy Boy (D), HD-32.
Mike Albans

  

Montanans elected nine Native Americans to the state Legislature Tuesday. That’s the same as last session in 2017.

Contentious Budget Bill One Vote From Passage At Montana Legislature

Apr 20, 2017
Rep. Nancy Ballance (R) - Hamilton.
Mike Albans

The state’s main budget bill is one vote away from going to the governor’s desk. Majorities in both the House and Senate have now agreed on it and some of its companion spending bills.

For the first time in recent memory, the state's main budget bill won't go to a joint House-Senate conference committee to hammer out any more deals. 

Efforts To Prevent Suicide Advance In Legislature

Mar 7, 2017
Young people who’ve experienced homelessness in Montana feel like they often fall through the cracks of programs designed to help kids fleeing abusive homes or needing a place to stay. Stock photo.
(PD)

A package of bills aimed at addressing youth suicide in Montana is working its way through the legislature. One of those bills, House Bill 381, would allow school districts to create policies and procedures for suicide prevention and response specific to their communities.

Bill To Establish Charter Schools Passes Montana House

Feb 27, 2017
Montana Capitol in Helena.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

A bill that its sponsor says would provide additional educational opportunities by establishing a public charter schools act passed the House of Representatives on a vote of 55-44 on Monday.

Montana Lawmakers Work On Suicide Prevention Legislation

Jan 30, 2017
Rep. Mary Ann Dunwell testifies on a bill at the Montana Legislature.
Freddy Monares/UM Community

During his State of the State address Tuesday, Gov. Steve Bullock said that he "cannot tolerate that Montana leads the nation in youth suicide."

"I am haunted by this statistic," Bullock said.

Rep. Jonathan Windy Boy (D), HD-32.
Mike Albans

A group of bills moving through the Montana legislature aim to address the state’s high suicide rate. Legislation introduced on Monday would fund grants in Native American communities, where the suicide rate among kids is more than five times higher than it is statewide.

Lawmakers Consider Expanding Montana's Native Language Preservation Program

Jan 5, 2017
Rep. Jonathan Windy Boy (D), HD-32.
Mike Albans

Lawmakers in Helena are looking at two bills that deal with Indian language preservation and education.

House Bill 37 seeks to add song to Montana’s Indian language preservation program, which protects indigenous spoken, written, and sign language.

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