With the 2015 legislative session winding down, a bill that would provide a $3,000 expense “constituent services stipend” to Montana legislators appears headed for final passage after clearing the Montana House of Representatives on Wednesday and passing 2nd reading in the Senate yesterday.
Montana Recent Headlines
Montana Democratic Governor Steve Bullock signed a high profile bill yesterday that aims to rid Montana elections of so-called “dark money.” However, critics of the governor are calling him a hypocrite over his role as Chair of the Democratic Governor’s Association (DGA).
Montana Democrats reached back into their past last week with the appointment of far left, staunch pro-abortion advocate, Nancy Keenan, as the party’s Executive Director.
Despite major problems with the Smarter Balanced (SBAC) testing system across the region, a recent decision by the Montana Office of Public Instruction (OPI) allowing school districts to withdraw from the Common-Core mandated program could put millions of dollars in federal funds at risk for the state.
As the Montana legislature works to finalize a budget as the 2015 session enters its final week, Montana Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock — who must sign off on the budget — is in Massachusetts today, running in the Boston Marathon.
Parliamentary maneuvering and a strategic partnership between moderate Republicans and Democrats in the Montana State legislature have provided Democrats with de-facto control over the House of Representatives on two key issues this session.
All Montana Senate Democrats and nearly half of the Senate Republicans voted on Wednesday to not to bring a high profile bill to the floor that would have required that law enforcement obtain a search warrant to retrieve data from third party administrators such as cell phone and email providers.
During yesterday’s intense floor debate in the Montana House of Representatives on the complex and controversial CSKT Water Compact, State Rep. Gordon Pierson (D-Deer Lodge) drew an ominous comparison when he called the compact the “Obamacare” of Montana.
In the wake of news that Montana ranks 49th out of the 50 states in wage and salaries according to 2013 tax return data, the Left is ratcheting up pressure on the legislature to approve a dollar an hour raise for state employees over the next two years.
A Flathead County Republican leader Jayson Peters has filed a 68-page complaint with the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices against the Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) and a Washington, D.C. based public affairs fimr over their activities lobbying for the CSKT Tribal Water Compact during the current legislative session.