Arren Kimbel-Sannit

Arren Kimbel-Sannit

Arren Kimbel-Sannit is an Arizona-bred journalist who has covered politics, policy and power building at every level of government. Before getting his dose of northern exposure, Arren worked as a reporter in all manner of Arizona newsrooms, for the Dallas Morning News and for POLITICO in Washington, D.C. He has a special interest in how land-use decisions affect working-class people, which he displayed through reporting on the epidemic of pedestrian deaths in the U.S. for the Los Angeles Times and PBS Newshour. He's also covered housing, agriculture, the Trump presidency and more.

Federal transportation bill holds promise for left-behind rural rail

By: - July 11, 2021

Language added in a recent markup to the U.S. Senate’s Surface Transportation Investment Act has brought some hope to passenger rail advocates in the state that long-abandoned rail service through Livingston, Helena and beyond could be on track to return. Montana Democratic Sen. Jon Tester’s amendment, passed on a bipartisan vote in June, appropriates $15 […]

Democratic attorney and PSC candidate launches Congressional bid

By: - July 7, 2021

The Democratic primary for Montana’s newly created U.S. House seat is now competitive. Monica Tranel, an attorney based in Missoula and former Olympic rower who mounted a run for the Montana Public Service Commission in 2020, announced Wednesday that she’s entering the race for the seat, joining state Rep. Laurie Bishop on the Democratic side. […]

Fire chief: July 4th holiday and dry conditions ‘can easily overwhelm’ fire departments

By: - July 2, 2021

A growing coalition of more than 150 fire scientists — including dozens from Montana universities — are warning against the use of fireworks this 4th of July weekend, citing widespread drought, unprecedented heatwaves and bone-dry fuels. In an op-ed published in the Conversation this week, the scientists, including University of Montana natural resource social scientist […]

Livingston Democrat launches Congressional bid

By: - July 1, 2021

State Rep. Laurie Bishop announced her candidacy for Montana’s newly created congressional district on Thursday, making her the first Democrat to formally enter the field at a unique moment in the state’s political history. For the first time in decades, two lawmakers will represent Montana in Congress’ lower chamber, a function of rapid population growth […]

Advisory group suggests two candidates for Cascade County judgeship

By: - June 30, 2021

The advisory council that Gov. Greg Gianforte appointed to review applicants to fill the vacancy in Montana’s Eighth Judicial District will suggest two candidates for the commission, it decided in its first meeting Wednesday. David Grubich, who currently serves as standing master in the Eighth District, which is centered around Cascade County, emerged as the […]

Gianforte snubbed as Biden announces wildfire initiatives

By: - June 30, 2021

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte didn’t get the invite to attend a meeting of western state governors at the White House on Wednesday to discuss a worsening forest fire threat across the region, which is once again set to experience a costly and severe fire season amid record-high temperatures, widespread drought and a weather system that’s […]

Supreme Court says it won’t dismiss case on legislative subpoena power

By: - June 29, 2021

The Montana Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that it will not set aside litigation challenging the extent of legislative subpoena power even as state lawmakers have rescinded the subpoenas at the root of the case — itself a spinoff of an earlier legal challenge to law passed in the last legislative session overhauling the judicial nomination […]

MSU microbiologist gets $3.4M federal grant to study ‘bio-mining’ from fool’s gold

By: - June 23, 2021

The U.S. Department of Energy on Wednesday announced a $3.4 million grant aiding in a Montana State University microbiologist’s efforts to better understand how certain microbes can “bio-mine” economically significant materials from pyrite, more popularly known as “fool’s gold.” The grant is part of the DOE’s Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, or EPSCoR, which […]

Robertson Draw and other blazes kick off what could be a devastating fire season

By: - June 19, 2021

Lorna and Earl Shetler’s place outside of Belfry didn’t seem likely to burn. The Robertson Draw fire, first spotted on Sunday about 12 miles south of Red Lodge in the Beartooth Mountains, was headed away from their home. The wind direction was encouraging. The Shetlers had been out of town for Earl’s dad’s 94th birthday […]

ICYMI: Prison gerrymandering could impact Indian Country voters

By: - June 16, 2021

Six months ago, lawmakers and policy experts in Montana were contemplating a legislative proposal for the forthcoming session to end what’s known as prison gerrymandering — a political consequence of a longstanding U.S. Census Bureau practice that counts incarcerated people as residents of the prison or jails that confine them, rather than of the places […]

Gianforte requests federal disaster aid for eastern Montana power outages

By: - June 15, 2021

Gov. Greg Gianforte on Tuesday issued a disaster declaration and requested federal assistance due to storm damage and power outages in five eastern Montana counties: Dawson, Garfield, McCone, Richland, and Roosevelt. The region was hit by severe thunderstorms, 90-plus mile-per-hour winds, and up to three-inch chunks of hail on June 10, damaging over 800 power […]

Yellowstone has record May

By: - June 11, 2021

Yellowstone this year had its busiest May on record, with more than 483,000 visits, the park said Friday. That’s an 11% increase from May of 2019 — the park isn’t comparing visiting statistics to the pandemic-hobbled 2020.  Throughout all of 2021, more than 658,500 people have come to Yellowstone, almost 100,000 more visitors then the […]