MTPR

Steve Daines

Montana Senators Steve Daines and Jon Tester found a new place for a bill that federally recognizes the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians. Last night, they placed it within the National Defense Authorization Act.

Vice President Mike Pence
Courtesy White House

Vice President Mike Pence visited Yellowstone National Park on Thursday to promote a plan to whittle away the more than $12 billion repair-and-maintenance backlog in national parks across the U.S.

The U.S. Senate unanimously passed a bill Wednesday to extend health care benefits to offshore Vietnam veterans who had contact with Agent Orange.

The current law only offers the benefits to veterans who served within the borders of Vietnam.

Power plant at Colstrip, MT.
Beth Saboe / MontanaPBS

Units 1 and 2 of the coal-fired power plant in Colstrip will permanently close at the end of this year. Plant operator Talen Energy made that announcement in a press release Tuesday, saying the company has been unsuccessful in making the units economically viable. Talen says the plant’s newer units, 3 and 4, will remain open.

CORRECTION: The orginal draft of this story said this bill would remove wilderness study designation to some public lands. The bill does not address wilderness study areas. 

For the third time in three years, Sen. Jon Tester held a rally for a bill he’s sponsoring to expand federally designated wilderness in northwest Montana, and allow some snowmobile and mountain bike use on public lands in the area.

About two hundred people packed the Kettlehouse Brewing taproom in Bonner over the noon hour to hear Tester speak at an event hosted by the Montana Wilderness Association. They’re all hoping this is the year the Blackfoot Clearwater Stewardship Act passes.

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