Author Archives: TSRA

2017 Legislative Leaders Elected

The Montana State Senate and House of Representatives elected their leadership for the 2017 Legislative Session on Monday, November 14, 2016.  They are:

House of Representatives:

Speaker:  Austin Knudsen, R-Culbertson

Speaker Pro-Tem:  Greg Hertz, R-Polson

Majority Leader:  Ron Ehli, R-Hamilton

Majority Whips: Alan Doane, R-Glendive; Theresa Manzella, R-Hamilton; Seth Berglee, R-Joliet; Brad Tschida, R-Missoula

Minority Leader:  Jennifer Eck, D-Helena

Minority Whips:  Casey Schreiner, D-Great Falls; Nate McConnell, D-Missoula; Shane Morigeau, D-Missoula

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MT Officials Fault EPA

November 5, 2016  Helena Independent Record    By Holly Michels

On Wednesday (November 2) Montana’s attorney general and the Public Service Commission joined several other states in submitting comments to the Environmental Protection Agency, criticizing the agency for ignoring the U.S. Supreme Court’s stay of the agency’s proposed carbon emissions regulations.

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Daines Urges Colleagues to Reverse the Ninth Circuit’s Cottonwood Decision

U.S. Senate – U.S. Senator Steve Daines today urged the members of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives to reverse the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals disastrous Cottonwood Decision.  In a memo to his colleagues, Daines underscored the critical nature of quick action to avoid further crippling of federal land management across Ninth Circuit states, and demonstrate why Congress should statutorily reverse the decision this year.

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Daines, Feinstein Call on Energy Conferees to Accelerate Forest Management, Fix Wildfire Funding

Earlier this month Montana Senator Daines and Senator Feinstein from California sent a letter to the Energy Bill Conferees.  They asked the conferees to fix wildfire funding, accelerate responsible management, and address litigation challenges.  This bipartisan letter is part of Senator Daines’ overall effort to reform forest management.  

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City of Helena Adopts Smith River Resolution

October 18, 2016  Helena Independent Record   By Tom Kuglin, IR

Following lengthy public comment (including comments from TSRA’s Executive Director in opposition), the Helena City Commission adopted a resolution Monday evening calling for assurance that a proposed Meagher County copper mine will not harm the Smith River.

Commissioners Robert Farris-Olsen, Ed Noonan and Andres Haladay voted in favor of the resolution while Mayor Jim Smith and Commissioner Dan Ellison opposed.  

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Black Butte Copper Project Mine Operating Permit Application Responses Submitted

White Sulphur Springs, MT – September 19, 2016 – Tintina Montana Inc. (“Tintina” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce that it has submitted responses to questions from the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) in regards to the underground Black Butte Copper Mine Operating Permit application (“MOP”).  This thorough review of the MOP includes detailed studies by third party consultants which have been peer reviewed to ensure the most robust and complete application possible.

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Water Committee Seeks Comments on 404 Permitting Study

The Water Policy Interim Committee (WPIC) of the Montana Legislature welcomes public comment on how the state might assume regulatory activities under federal Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.  At their July 12, 2016 meeting WPIC approved a draft report that includes their findings as well as recommendations that might be adopted.  Recommendations range from encouraging further study to drafting legislation.

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Large Montana Coal Plant to Close 2 Units

Source:  Billings Gazette   By:  Matthew Brown, Associated Press    July 13, 2016

A large Montana coal plant serving utility customers across the Pacific Northwest agreed Tuesday to shut down two of the four units by 2022 and limit pollution from the plant until that happens, under a settlement with environmentalists who sued over emission violations.

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DEQ to Petition For Intervention on Behalf of EPA on Nutrient Litigation

HELENA – Department of Environmental Quality announced today (July 8, 2016)  it will petition to intervene on the Environmental Protection Agency’s behalf in a lawsuit challenging the EPA’s approval of the state’s implementation strategy for water quality standards for nutrients.  The suit was filed in federal district court in Great Falls by Upper Missouri River Waterkeeper.

“Developing water quality standards for nutrients was one of the most robust public involvement processes ever undertaken by DEQ.  It was a collaborative effort involving cities and towns, industry, public interest groups, and DEQ,” said DEQ Deputy Director George Mathieus.

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