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Repeat DUI offender arrested after smashing snowman

A woman with four previous DUIs is once again accused of driving impaired, this time allegedly plowing through a ditch and smashing a snowman in front of multiple witnesses. Christine Lois Simmons, 73, was booked into the Flathead County Detention Center on Christmas Eve, charged with felony DUI. READ FULL STORY

Montana Millionaire winning tickets announced

If you bought ticket number 233771 or ticket number 100451 in the Montana Millionaire raffle, today is a good day – those were the two winning numbers, each worth one million dollars. The winning numbers were announced at Montana Lottery headquarters in Helena on Tuesday morning. The tickets were sold in Butte and Missoula. READ FULL STORY

Minimum wage in Montana: biggest increase in years

GREAT FALLS — Montana’s minimum wage will increase from $8.75 per hour to $9.20 per hour beginning on Saturday, January 1, 2022 – an increase of 45 cents per hour. Montana law requires that the minimum wage be adjusted annually based on changes in inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index all Urban Consumers (CPI-U) from Read More…

University of Montana announces new Provost and Executive Vice President

MISSOULA, Mont. — After a nationwide search, the University of Montana announced they have hired Dr. Pardis Mahdavi to serve the university as the new Provost, Executive Vice President, no. 2 administrator, and academic officer. Mahdavi currently serves as Dean of Social Sciences at Arizona State University. In previous years, she has served as acting Dean Read More…

Rosebud Co. Sheriff & Deputy deliver check to organization making blankets for nursing home residents

FORSYTH, Mont. – A $500 check was delivered by Rosebud County Sheriff Fulton and Deputy Stradinger to an organization that makes blankets for nursing home residents. Crocheted With Love was surprised with the donation Saturday. “With Covid still restricting interactions, the residents just came up and picked out a blanket,” the Rosebud County Sheriff’s Office Read More…

Senators strike up friendly rivalry before Montana State takes on South Dakota State

BOZEMAN, Mont. – As game day nears, Montana State University Bozeman graduate Senator Steve Daines is ramping up a new, friendly rivalry with South Dakota State University graduate Senator Mike Rounds. “I’ve never seen a bobcat run from a jackrabbit,” Daines joked. “You’ve never seen a South Dakota jackrabbit have you?” Rounds replied. Before placing Read More…

Glacier Park to keep ticketed entry for 2022 season

Glacier National Park will require tickets to enter the Going-to-the-Sun Road corridor in the 2022 summer season, park spokeswoman Gina Kerzman confirmed Friday. The park is also exploring the possibility of a ticketed entry system for the Polebridge entrance up the North Fork, she confirmed, but cautioned that has not been finalized. READ FULL STORY

Flathead County Library Director Resigns Amid Board Meddling

The interim leader of Flathead County’s ImagineIF public library system resigned on Thursday, citing interference by a board of trustees that has devalued the institution by slashing salaries while entertaining motions to censor certain books and materials, particularly those that portray characters who are gay, queer or transgender. After serving in the director position for just four Read More…

Missoula airport sees Thanksgiving travel surge, officials preparing for Christmas traffic

MISSOULA, Mont. — Thanksgiving travel hit record highs at the Missoula airport, which is forcing officials to think about the kind of rush they will receive on Christmas. “We are just ticking up our expectations now for Christmas based on what we did for Thanksgiving, so we are actually coming up with some overflow parking plan Read More…

Annual food drive benefits Kalispell Veterans

MISSOULA, Mont. — For the past ten years, the Veterans of Foreign Warfare (VFW) Post 2252 has hosted the Veterans Annual Food Drive. This year, their goal was to fill a moving van with food donations for holiday meals. The drive took place in the Rosauers parking lot on Saturday, where volunteers and Veterans came out Read More…

After 20+ years with Montana Highway Patrol, Sgt. Patrick McLaughlin will retire on Monday

HELENA, MT- For decades, Sgt. Patrick McLaughlin has served the state of Montana with the Montana Highway Patrol. Before working for MHP, McLaughlin was a volunteer firefighter for the Belgrade Fire Department for many years, which launched his career in service. “Even before I met Pat he was serving this community as a volunteer fire Read More…

Kalispell Chamber Recognizes Local Leaders Amid Unprecedented Growth

The Kalispell Chamber of Commerce recognized local leaders during its 117th annual Grand Event on Nov. 10, honoring local attorney Tom Esch with its oldest and most prestigious award for his work facilitating the Kalispell Core Area Development and Parkline Trail projects. In addition to handing out the 50th iteration of its “Community Legacy” (formerly Read More…

Roosevelt County rancher named Senator Steve Daines’ ‘Montanan of the Month’ for heroics following Amtrak Derailment

BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) – On September 25, Amtrak’s “Empire Builder” derailed in northern Montana resulting in several injuries and three deaths. Many first responders and good Samaritans worked together to help those onboard, including a Roosevelt County man who was honored by Senator Steve Daines. Sixty-one-year-old Daniel Hutchinson is a rancher, Navy veteran, and foster Read More…

Park County Housing Needs Assessment shows low vacancy rates, rapidly rising home prices

LIVINGSTON, Mont. – The residents of Park County are not alone when trying to find affordable housing options in a booming Montana housing market, but a recent needs assessment shows worrisome concerns for area housing. The Park County Housing Coalition launched by the Park County Community Foundation and Human Resource Development Council of District IX Read More…

HUNTER NUMBERS AND HARVESTS DOWN IN SOUTH-CENTRAL MONTANA

The second week of rifle season brought fewer hunters to south-central Montana check stations. In fact, overall hunter numbers were at “near historic lows” except for Lavina, where the number of hunters and harvested deer and elk “were the highest in recent history,” according to the Billings Gazette. Tallies for 2020 are not available because Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks closed check Read More…

Montana launches innovative new student assessment pilot project

State Superintendent Elsie Arntzen today announced Montana is initiating a new student growth assessment pilot. The Montana Alternative Student Testing (MAST) Pilot Program is a partnership with participating school districts and MetaMetrics, Inc., and is overseen by the Montana Office of Public Instruction. The pilot is designed to lessen the burden of federally mandated testing Read More…

UM professor resigns amid investigation into his controversial blog

A tenured professor at the University of Montana announced through his attorney that he has resigned amid an investigation into his blog. This comes after a student newspaper reported the blog shared homophobic and misogynistic views. Rob Smith’s statement, which was shared on Twitter, said the university previously told him his blog, which he says expresses Read More…

Former Montana Native Women’s Coalition chairwoman sentenced for stealing federal grant funds

Former chairwoman of the Montana Native Women’s Coalition, Meredith McConnell has been sentenced for stealing federal grant funds for unapproved travel to Las Vegas, Nevada, and other unauthorized expenses. McConnell was found guilty at a trial on April 2 by a federal jury on all counts in a superseding indictment, including theft from a program receiving federal Read More…