Inter Lake: Time to Protect Timber Industry

Aaron Flint posted on September 04, 2014 13:40 :: 833 Views

Northwest Montana’s economy continues to struggle, with fresh concerns following a ruling from US District Judge Don Molloy (L-Missoula). 

The Western News: Montana congressman tours Montanore Mine

U.S. Rep. Steve Daines  visited the Montanore mine outside of Libby Friday afternoon in light of the 2014 election in which he is campaigning for the U.S. Senate seat.

In response to a question about how important the mine is to the community and state, Daines emphasized that an opportunity like the mine is something that can’t be ignored. Dobbs said about 300 mines would be created from the mine’s production, and Daines said this rise is jobs would help the Libby community and the state at large.

“This is a very exciting time for us to embrace a chance like this to open up jobs to a place like Libby,” Daines said.

Missoula Independent: Congress deadlocks on solutions to wildfire funding

Federal and state officials and policymakers agree that the current budgeting model, also used by the Department of Interior, is broken. And firefighting costs keep climbing: Wildfire season is two months longer than it used to be, and since the 1970s, the average acreage burned has increased five-fold. Plus, development keeps encroaching on forests, forcing firefighters to defend homes, an expensive—and dangerous—task.

The bipartisan Wildfire Disaster Funding Act would treat the biggest wildfires like any other natural disaster (the same approach proposed by President Obama’s 2015 budget). When firefighting costs exceed 70 percent of the 10-year average, land-management agencies could tap a $2.7 billion federal disaster relief account. That would enable agencies to fully fund existing programs, including those that reduce fire danger.

The Senate bill was introduced by Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Mike Crapo, R-Idaho; the House version, sponsored by Reps. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and Kurt Schrader, D-Ore., has 60 Republican cosponsors, including Rep. Steve Daines of Montana, and 71 Democratic cosponsors. More than 200 organizations have endorsed it, including the American Farm Bureau Federation, the American Loggers Council, The Nature Conservancy and even the National Rifle Association. Five Western governors sent letters supporting the bill, and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell has urged its passage.

CNN: Firefighters come to the rescue of a pair of mountain lion cubs

Two Montana firefighters dressed in their bright yellow firefighting gear stand smiling broadly, each cuddling what looks like a blackened and charred chunk of wood.

That’s not charred wood they’re holding but a pair of mountain lion cubs they saved from the Three Mile Fire in the Bitterroot National Forest east of Florence, Montana.


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