Montana Public Radio

Mark Noland

Hearing room at the Montana Capitol.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Montana has become the latest state to consider a legislative measure that would prevent media outlets from reporting on news that lawmakers deem defamatory.

It took more than a decade interspersed with multiple ballot initiatives and courtroom debates to set Montana’s policy for regulating medical marijuana. State lawmakers are now seeking to avoid those past pitfalls as they face the challenge of regulating the state’s fledgling recreational marijuana industry.

Pepper Petersen rattles off marijuana strains in a Helena medical dispensary.

“Lime Haze. Gelato Zkittlez Cake. And of course, Mendolicious, it’s very popular."

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.

Health care worker holding a clipboard.
iStock

The Montana House of Representatives advanced a bill Wednesday that outlines how patients could pay for medical care directly without health insurance.

A 2020 Montana primary election absentee ballot
Nicky Ouellet / Yellowstone Public Radio

Montana lawmakers are considering several bills this session that aim to regulate election practices, including one that’s nearly identical to a policy that’s currently tied up in court.

Mom's Organic Market store in Virginia with customer sign to wear face mask covering beyond this point to protect employees during Covid-19 coronavirus outbreak
iStock

The Montana House of Representatives has advanced a bill that aims to protect businesses from liability in COVID-19 related lawsuits. The policy is key in Gov. Greg Gianforte’s plan to remove the state’s mask mandate. 

Senate Bill 65 passed the House Monday on a party-line vote. 

House Bill 300, introduced in the 2019 Montana Legislative session, called for a 2.5 percent sales tax and the elimination of certain property taxes.
Corin Cates-Carney / Montana Public Radio

A 2.5 percent sales tax and the elimination of certain property taxes is under consideration by the Montana Legislature.

It’s a proposal that could swing the source of billions of dollars in state revenue; create new regional commissions to recommend how public dollars are spent; and shift the burden of taxes across Montana.

Vernon Finley, former chairman of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes speaks at the Montana Undivided rally in Whitefish Saturday
Nicky Ouellet

Competing visions of the American West were on display at competing events in Whitefish Saturday. People rallied for their ideas about tribal sovereignty, public lands and constitutional rights.

Legislative Fatigue Sets In On Bonding Bill

Apr 24, 2017
Montana House of Representatives.
Montana Public Radio

An attempt failed Monday at the Montana Legislature to revive a bonding measure that would pay for university buildings on three campuses and more.

Montana Republican Party
Montana Republican Party

The state legislative session is now more than third of the way finished. At a Republican Party gathering in Kalispell Friday, about 30 party members said they're generally happy with how it's going, as Republicans hold majorities in both the state House and Senate.

The Glacier Country Pachyderm Club spoke with five Flathead Valley Republican legislators on Skype for almost an hour Friday to hear updates on their bills.