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.

Competitive districts and political boundaries up for debate in proposed redistricting criteria

By: - June 10, 2021

Members of the Montana Districting and Apportionment Commission have brought forth two proposals for criteria that will govern how the state draws lines separating its legislative and congressional districts, a significant task that will play out over the coming 18 months. The pair of proposals, one submitted by the commission’s two Republicans and the other […]

Gianforte pushes active management strategy amid heightened wildfire threat

By: - June 9, 2021

Montana is set to experience an above-average fire season, with more than 4 million acres of forest land at high risk for wildfires as well as insects and disease, state and federal officials said Wednesday. Persistent drought across much of Montana has left the state vulnerable to fire, especially east of the continental divide, according […]

Sherry Essmann to replace Patelis in HD52

By: - June 8, 2021

The Yellowstone County Commission has appointed Sherry Essmann, a current member of the state banking board and wife of former lawmaker and state GOP chair Jeff Essmann, to fill the vacancy in House District 52 in west Billings. Sherry Essmann confirmed her appointment to the Daily Montanan on Tuesday and said she would be handing in […]

ARPA steering group recommends $102 million in COVID aid healthcare programs

By: - June 3, 2021

A state commission Thursday recommended approval of more than $100 million in federally funded COVID-19 relief programs under the umbrella of public health and healthcare, one of the first significant allocation of funds in Montana from the American Rescue Plan Act. A steering group of lawmakers and appointees from the executive branch — among them […]

Arizona election audit observer: County data could be under review at Montana lab

By: - June 2, 2021

Observers of a Legislature-sponsored review and recount of election results in Arizona’s largest county alleged last week that “copies of voting system data” were sent to an unnamed lab in Montana with little explanation, according to a summary of notes from the Arizona Secretary of State’s office, which sponsored the observers. The observation reads that […]

Five applicants vie for Eighth District judgeship

By: - June 2, 2021

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte on Wednesday began soliciting public comment on five applicants to fill the vacancy in the state’s Eighth Judicial District, an open seat created after the Senate voted not to confirm Judge Michele Reinhard Levine, a former Democratic state lawmaker and appointee of Gov. Steve Bullock. The application window closed June 1. […]

Tester touts ARPA relief in Helena trip

By: - June 1, 2021

Paul Mabie and his husband put everything on the line to launch the Oddfellow Inn and Farm on a patch of agricultural land outside of Helena in July of 2019. Less than a year later, the pandemic threatened to take it all away from the couple, also partners in the business. “We would have probably […]

AG Knudsen targets anti-racism curricula in legal opinion

By: - May 27, 2021

Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen on Thursday issued a legal opinion asserting that aspects of the intellectual and academic framework known as critical race theory violate federal and state law, warning that schools that violate the law could be legally liable or risk losing government support. Knudsen writes that his opinion is not to ban […]

Legislature again moves for Supreme Court to recuse itself in McLaughlin case

By: - May 27, 2021

Legal counsel for the Montana Legislature on Wednesday once again asked the state Supreme Court to disqualify itself from hearing a case stemming from a series of legislative subpoenas for communications and other records from members of the court. The court on May 12 had previously denied a motion from the Legislature and its counsel, […]

Montana Board of Housing narrows list of projects for federal affordable housing tax credit

By: - May 26, 2021

The Montana Board of Housing this week chose eight affordable rental properties across the state to apply for federal affordable housing tax credits available in 2022 totaling almost $29 million, it said in a news release Wednesday. The board received preliminary applications from 14 low-income senior and multifamily housing project developers interested in receiving a […]

Districting and Apportionment Commission meets for first time with series of unknowns still ahead

By: - May 25, 2021

The monumental process to decide how and where to draw Montana’s legislative and congressional districts began Tuesday afternoon with the initial meeting of the state Districting and Apportionment Commission, which, among other tasks, must decide during the coming months how to divide two Congressional seats for the first time in decades. A years-long process awaits […]

Gianforte signs $12.6B budget

By: - May 20, 2021

Gov. Greg Gianforte on Thursday signed the state’s $12.6 billion biennial spending plan, fulfilling the Legislature’s sole constitutional authority and enshrining tax and spending cuts that he and allied lawmakers championed this session. The budget comes in more than $100 million slimmer than the proposal that Gianforte brought to the Legislature at the beginning of […]