Steve Bullock

Bakken Spinoffs
6:35 am
Thu December 5, 2013

Oil Boom continues to strain infrastructure of Eastern Montana communities

Sidney Mayor Bret Smelser stands out on the sidewalk of Central Avenue, which has seen a dramatic increase in truck traffic the last few years.
Dan Boyce

(Note: This is the first of a six-part series on "Bakken Spinoffs" airing Thursdays through January 9th on "Montana Evening Edition.")

Sidney’s Mayor, Bret Smelser, stood at the corner of his community’s busiest street, Central Avenue. A steady stream of traffic, punctuated with big rigs, leaves thick white exhaust hanging in the frigid air. Smelser nodded to one truck.

“One of our city crew, collecting twice as much garbage as we did two years ago,” he said.

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Public Defenders
11:49 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Raises and increased staff not enough to stop case overload for public defenders

The state’s Chief Public Defender says workloads for public defense attorneys have improved due to financial help from the Montana Legislature. However, Bill Hooks said his office still needs more help.

The 2013 Legislature gave the public defender’s office *$1.2 million in new money for employee raises, which Hooks said has been very helpful.

"We were able to bring our attorney salaries more in line with what our colleagues were getting in other courts throughout the state,” Hooks said. “So I think that was a significant improvement and we're very appreciative of that.”

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2014 Election
10:40 am
Wed October 9, 2013

Sen. Peterson continues efforts to rein in dark money with ballot initiative

Sen. Jim Peterson (R-Buffalo)

A prominent Republican State Senator is leading efforts to qualify an initiative for the 2014 ballot which would require more disclosure of political spending on state elections. The Stop Dark Money initiative is based upon a bill that failed this last legislative session.

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2014 Senate Race
2:39 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

FULL INTERVIEW: Lt. Gov. Walsh announces U.S. Senate bid

A screenshot taken from Lt. Gov. John Walsh's Senate campaign website.

Montana's Lieutenant Governor, John Walsh has announced he is running for the U.S. seat being vacated by Sen. Max Baucus in 2014. 

Walsh announced his intentions today, launching this website complete with a more than two minute video outlining his 33 years serving in the Montana National Guard, including serving as Adjutant General from 2008 to 2012, when he left the guard to join the ticket of then-gubernatorial candidate Steve Bullock.

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Montana Symphony Orchestras
6:00 am
Sun September 8, 2013

Helena Symphony opens 59th with Governor Bullock

Governor Steve Bullock

The 59th Season opens with Governor Steve Bullock narrating the powerful words by and about President Lincoln in Copland’s Lincoln Portrait. This spirit of Americana is coupled with maverick Charles Ives’ Symphony No. 2, complete with gospel tunes, American songs, and barn-dancing fiddles. The season opener culminates with Beethoven’s revolutionary testament in THE groundbreaking and mighty Eroica Symphony. The evening concludes with a dessert reception in the Helena Civic Center Ballroom.

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Education
11:07 am
Tue August 20, 2013

State expanding early childhood education pilot program

Caregiver Amanda Hatch plays with two-year-old Maya at her day care center Katerpillar Korner in Helena.
Credit Dan Boyce

Governor Steve Bullock is looking to put more focus into early childhood education—that is, education before a kid is five years old. Bullock said Montana ranks near the bottom of states in investment in early ed.

However, state spending did increase this past legislative session by nearly $2 and a half million dollars.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce says that money will go toward increasing a ranking program for day-care centers called the Best Beginnings Stars to Quality Program.

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Montana News
3:44 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

How rare is it for someone to 'lie in state' in the Montana Capitol?

Betty Babcock was the first person to lay in state in the capitol rotunda since 1962
Credit Dan Boyce

A closed casket viewing was held in the Capitol building’s rotunda this for the public to pay respects for former Montana First Lady Betty Babcock.

The wife of former Governor Tim Babcock died this past Sunday at age 91.

It’s rare for anybody to lie in state in Montana’s seat of public power.

Former Governor Tom Judge’s casket was given a public viewing after he died in 2006. That was in the Old Supreme Court Chambers, on the third floor.  

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Economic Development
3:28 pm
Fri August 9, 2013

Gov. hopes surveys spark economic development ideas

Gov. Steve Bullock is asking the public to help flesh out a plan for economic development in the state.

The Main Street Montana Project wrapped up a series of seven roundtable discussions in different communities in July. The governor is now hoping to collect ideas through surveys. He said he wants to figure out what works for businesses and what doesn’t—from the businesses themselves.

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Education
3:15 pm
Tue July 16, 2013

Top education leaders discuss priorities with Gov. Bullock

The Board of Education meets in the state capitol building in Helena Tuesday
Credit Dan Boyce

  

Leaders from across Montana’s public education spectrum met in Helena Tuesday to discuss shared priorities for improving the experience and results for the state’s students.

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Capitol Evacuation
5:25 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Capitol building evacuated after suspicious letter received by Governor's Office

A Helena Fire Department engine is parked outside the Montana Capitol Wednesday afternoon after the building was evacuated.
Credit Dan Boyce

  Law Enforcement and fire officials evacuated the state capitol building Wednesday after a suspicious letter was received, intended for Governor Steve Bullock. The Governor was not in the building at the time. 

The state employee receiving the letter has been quarantined, though there have been no injuries.

Helena Fire Captain Brian Roberts said his Department and the Helena Police Department were called to the Capitol building at about 12:15 PM A mail handler for Governor Steve Bullock’s office had opened an anonymous letter.

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