Dan Boyce

Capitol Bureau Chief

Dan Boyce provides radio and online reports daily from the State Capitol. A native Montanan, Dan was raised in Lewistown and graduated from the University of Montana with a broadcast journalism degree in December, 2008. He took the position of MTPR Capitol Bureau Chief after more than two years working as a reporter with KBZK-TV in Bozeman. Dan has won local, regional, and national awards for both his radio and television reporting. His work has appeared nationally on the NPR programs All Things Considered, Morning Edition, and Weekend Edition as well as on CNN and The CBS Evening News. Dan has also taken part in journalism fellowships in both Germany and Pakistan.

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NSA Leaks
11:36 am
Mon November 11, 2013

ACLU National Security Attorney says MT leading in digital privacy

ACLU National Security Project Attorney Patrick Toomey

The National Security Agency has come under public scrutiny the past few months after details of secret surveillance programs were leaked to the media.

These programs involve broad monitoring of cell phone calls, emails, and online chats.

The NSA claims these programs have kept Americans safe, but they have raised widespread concerns the agency is going too far in invading the privacy of U.S. citizens.

The American Civil Liberties Union actively opposes the NSA’s spy programs.

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NorthWestern Energy
4:05 pm
Fri November 8, 2013

NorthWestern details PPL Dam purchase proposal to lawmakers

NorthWestern Energy continues to work on plans to purchase 11 hydroelectric dams from PPL Montana.

The approximately $900 million dollar deal will have to be approved by the state Public Service Commission.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce says NorthWestern updated members of the Montana Legislature on their plans.

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2014 Senate Race
2:51 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Former Republican Lt. Gov. files for Senate as Democrat

Former Lt. Gov. John Bohlinger poses for a picture in his Helena home Thursday.
Credit Dan Boyce

Former Republican Lieutenant Governor John Bohlinger said Thursday he would be the Democratic candidate most able to defeat Congressman Steve Daines in the 2014 Senate Race.

The 77 year-old Bohlinger announced his Senate bid during a Tuesday dinner party held by the Lewis and Clark County Democratic Central Committee, but it was largely overshadowed by Daines announcing his Senate ambitions during a high-profile gathering in Bozeman on Wednesday.

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2014 Senate Race
3:03 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Daines officially announces Senate bid

Congressman Steve Daines pauses during his announcement that he will jump into Montana's 2014 U.S. Senate Race.
Credit Dan Boyce

Congressman Steve Daines officially announced his intentions Wednesday to run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Senator Max Baucus in 2014.

"Montanans fundamentally understand that our federal government is too big, it is too powerful, it spends too much and it interferes too often with our daily lives," Daines told the crowd of a couple hundred supporters at the Holiday Inn in Bozeman.

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Affordable Care Act
3:32 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

Study says uninsured Montanans likely to buy plans through Obamacare

A screenshot from the Affordable Care Act insurance website, healthcare.gov.

Few uninsured Montanans go without coverage voluntarily, says a new report released Monday by the University of Montana Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

“That means that had insurance been available, they would have taken it,” said the bureau’s Interim Health Care Research Director, Paul Polzin.

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Resort Tax
5:57 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Wolf Creek looking to implement resort tax

Wolf Creek-area resident Pat Hunter is leading efforts to implement a 3 percent resort tax in the community.
Dan Boyce

Some residents in the town of Wolf Creek are looking to change their tiny hamlet north of Helena into a resort. Or, at least, they are hoping to set up a resort tax.

Wolf Creek area resident Pat Hunter said the community needs extra money to clean up groundwater.

“The people in Wolf Creek would not be asking for a resort tax if they weren’t faced with the burden of putting in a sewer system that, quite frankly, they can’t afford,” Hunter said.

Hunter predicts the three percent resort tax would earn the community about $30 thousand dollars a year.

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DEQ Closure
3:27 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

DEQ closes own building for lead contamination

The Department of Environmental Quality building at 1100 North Last Chance Gulch will be closed for an indeterminate amount of time after an examination found lead contamination.
Credit Dan Boyce

Nearly 100 Montana Department of Environmental Quality workers were sent home on paid leave Monday after inspections found elevated levels of lead in one of the department’s own buildings.

“The irony is not lost on us,” said DEQ Director Tracy Stone-Manning said regarding contaminants in Helena’s old armory at the north end of Last Chance Gulch, where DEQ now houses its division responsible for environmental cleanup.

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Climate Week 2013
11:00 am
Fri October 25, 2013

Habitat shrinking for high alpine animals, like the tiny pika

A pika crouches on a rock near Gable Pass in Glacier National Park
Jake Bramante/hike734.com

Hiker Jake Bramante reached his destination, just on the other side of Gable Pass in Glacier National Park. He was looking to find an area he had seen once before, a limestone boulder field he knew was home to a population of one of his favorite animals—the pika.

“Any time I get to see them it’s always a special thing,” Bramante said. “They’re just cute and I love how hearty they are.”

Hearty in the right climate, anyway.

  “Some of these high elevation species that are dependent on cold, they may have some problems here in the Northern Rockies,”

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Affordable Care Act
3:38 pm
Wed October 23, 2013

MT Insurance companies see trickle of applications come through from Obamacare

Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica Lindeen

  The state’s insurance commissioner says Montanans are still having problems signing up for health insurance on the Affordable Care Act online marketplace. Most states, including Montana, opted to let the Federal Government run their Obamacare market. The federal site has been plagued with glitches and technical problems for three weeks now, and it is not clear when they will all be fixed.

Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica Lindeen said Wednesday that is not acceptable.

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Government Shutdown
5:07 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Tea Party groups slam Daines for vote to end shutdown

Rep. Steve Daines (R-Mont.)

  The end of the federal government shutdown this week exposes a growing rift in the Republican Party—a rift between moderates and Tea Party Republicans.

Passage of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act boosted the Tea Party movement three years ago and the momentum put the GOP back in charge of the House of Representatives. Republicans have since tried multiple tactics to delay or defund Obamacare—culminating in the government shutdown early this month.

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