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BLM approves American Prairie Reserve’s bison grazing proposal

The Bureau of Land Management approved American Prairie Reserve’s application for grazing leases on 63,000 acres of BLM-administered land in Phillips County on July 28. The application became a lightning rod for opinions about both bison and APR, which aims to conserve prairie species by acquiring large private parcels and connecting them with tracts of…

Court strikes down new ballot distribution law

A Montana district court judge ruled Wednesday that a new law prohibiting ballot distribution to minors who will turn 18 by Election Day violates the state Constitution — resolving one question in an ongoing legal challenge to four election laws passed by the 2021 Legislature.

Environmental groups sue DEQ over coal mine expansion

In their July 26 lawsuit, the Montana Environmental Information Center and the Sierra Club argue that Westmoreland Rosebud Mining, LLC’s proposal to expand Rosebud Mine into the headwaters of Lee Coulee would exacerbate climate change impacts ranging from shrinking snowpacks and increasing wildfire activity to crop losses, forest die-offs and wildfire smoke-induced air quality declines.…

Altacare no longer offering CSCT services in Montana

At last count, Altacare was offering comprehensive in-school mental health services for 307 Montana students. The company’s closure, announced to state officials in May, speaks to broader financial and regulatory pressures on other providers in the state.

Where will all the wildlife go?

On June 7, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service unveiled a proposal to introduce threatened and endangered species outside of their historic ranges to prevent them from becoming stranded by climate-driven habitat changes. Some conservationists describe the move as a long-overdue game-changer, while others cast a wary eye on what they describe as an attempt…

Montana wants to expand institutional mental health and addiction treatment. What’s the downside? 

In July, the federal government authorized Montana to use Medicaid coverage at large inpatient addiction treatment facilities. But health authorities also delivered a significant set-back for the state’s overall plan: they would not allow Medicaid to cover treatments at large hospitals that handle serious mental illnesses, including the problem-plagued Montana State Hospital in Warm Springs.


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