MTPR

Montana Historical Society

Screen capture, Montana Heritage Center project website, August 20, 2019.
The Montana Heritage Center / Montana Department of Administration

Two committees have been appointed for the building of a new Montana Heritage Center.

Department of Administration Director John Lewis appointed 12 Montanans for their backgrounds, experience and affiliations with Helena to analyze the best location and design for the new center. 

Montana Capitol in Helena.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

Controversial policy was decided in the waning hours of the 2019 Montana legislative session Thursday. The final acts of the Legislature included funding for a new state history museum, and raising fees on brokers and investment advisors.

Panel Advances Montana Museums Act

Apr 24, 2019
"Herd Bull," a bronze bison skull sculpture by artist Benji Daniels on display in front of the Montana Historical Society in Helena, MT.
Eric Whitney / Montana Public Radio

HELENA — After being originally tabled, but then revived by the entire House of Representatives, the Montana Museums Act passed out of committee Wednesday.

Senate Bill 338 would increase the state bed tax from three to four percent to pay for a new location for the Montana Historical Society, which the agency has been asking for for about 15 years. The bill would also use the increased tax revenue to build and maintain infrastructure for other museums and historical sites across Montana.

Tonight on Capitol Talk: State lawmakers are buckling-down on a number of issues, including increased oversight of non-profit schools for troubled teens; what infrastructure projects to support or reject; what to cut or support in the health department; and whether ratepayers should bear the burden of keeping Colstrip's coal plant going.

Learn more now on Capitol Talk.

Montana Capitol in Helena.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

A new proposal from House Republicans is calling for a scaled down version of Gov. Steve Bullock’s plan for the state to borrow money for public works projects.

Bullock’s infrastructure plan released early in the session called for $160 million in state bonding.

That money would fund $44 million in local assistance grants. It would also and pay for additional water and wastewater grants through the treasure state endowment program, funded through coal severance tax.

Jeannette Rankin, the first and only woman Montana has sent to Congress.
Library of Congress/ WNYC Studios

  

MTPR'S Eric Whitney interviews WNYC's Mara Silvers, a Montana native, about the podcast episode she produced for WNYC's United States of Anxiety podcast, which you can find here: "The Original Nasty Woman."

 Signs stacked inside the headquarters of the newly formed Montana Federation Of Public Employees. Union organizers campaigned for union membership before the US Supreme Court ruling concerning labor union membership.
Corin Cates-Carney

A U.S. Supreme court decision expected in the coming weeks could deal a big blow to Montana’s public sector unions. The decision could make Montana a so-called ‘Right-to-Work’ state in the public sector, costing the state’s biggest union membership, revenue, and bargaining power.

Montana Historical Society Press

Step out of a world governed by clocks and calendars and into the world of the Kootenai and Blackfeet peoples, whose traditional territories included the area that is now Glacier National Park.

"Herd Bull," a bronze bison skull sculpture by artist Benji Daniels on display in front of the Montana Historical Society in Helena, MT.
Eric Whitney / Montana Public Radio

Montana's Historical Society has been asking state lawmakers for help to build a new building for years. In the last legislative session it narrowly missed getting the okay to issue bonds for construction. Now, a Republican lawmaker is proposing it sell off parts of its collection to pay for a new museum.

As state lawmakers debate larger budget and infrastructure bills, Billings Representative Dennis Lenz is proposing letting the Historical Society sell art and other objects to generate up to $50 million for construction:

From Ruth Garfield, a female sheriff in 1920, to Elouise Cobell, a Blackfeet banker in the 21st Century, women have significantly shaped the state and communities across Montana. Beyond Schoolmarms and Madams celebrates the 100th anniversary of women winning the right to vote in Montana, six years before the 19th Amendment. Two of the authors, Annie Hanshew and Laura Ferguson, discuss how the Montana Historical Society selected the collection of women's stories.

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