Author

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.

Calls to relist continue after 20 Yellowstone wolves killed in first part of season

By: - January 7, 2022

A coalition of Western environmental organizations is calling for the U.S. Department of the Interior to relist gray wolves in the northern Rockies on an emergency basis following reports that hunters had killed 20 wolves from Yellowstone National Park that wandered from the park’s boundary into surrounding states since the back half of 2021. Fifteen […]

Conservative pastor J.D. Hall leads January 6 rally at Capitol

By: - January 6, 2022

Around 25 people joined pastor and conservative website publisher Jordan “J.D.” Hall on a frigid Thursday at the Capitol to mark one year since the January 6 riot in Washington, D.C., which saw supporters of then-President Donald Trump breach the U.S. Capitol amid a vote in Congress to certify the presidential election in favor of […]

Water groups file federal complaint over Hebgen Dam failure

By: - January 5, 2022

A group of Montana environmental organizations is calling for an outside, independent investigation into the ecological impacts of a gate failure at Hebgen Dam in November that resulted in plummeting water levels in a stretch of the upper Madison River, stranding some fish to die and dewatering spawning areas. Upper Missouri Waterkeeper, the Montana Environmental […]

Gianforte: ‘The state does not need to exercise emergency powers’ to combat omicron

By: - January 4, 2022

Gov. Greg Gianforte acknowledged the high degree of transmissibility of the omicron COVID-19 variant but maintained at a press conference Tuesday at the Capitol that Montana would not return to a state of emergency or implement a vaccine mandate. “The state does not need to exercise emergency powers,” Gianforte said at the press briefing, held […]

Industry, customers exhale with beginning of adult-use pot in Montana

By: - January 3, 2022

It was late morning on New Years Day, and though much of downtown Helena was cold and quiet, business was good at the Cannabis Corner. A steady stream of customers had braved the frigid temps all morning long, lining up in the dawn of a new day for Montana: Recreational marijuana had arrived. Though technically […]

‘Dark money’ prosecutor sues state in public records row

By: and - December 24, 2021

A Billings attorney known for his involvement in prosecuting campaign finance violations is suing the state over a public records fight he’s picked with several top officials, including Lt. Gov. Kristen Juras and Attorney General Austin Knudsen. Gene Jarussi, an attorney who represented the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices in high-profile litigation related to campaign […]

Montana to change way prisoners are counted

By: - December 21, 2021

The Montana Districting and Apportionment commission is moving forward with its plan to change how incarcerated people in the state are counted for the purposes of legislative redistricting, voting to send out a request for proposals to vendors who may be able to do the necessary analysis in a meeting earlier this month. The commissioners […]

Montana has paid only 3,000 return-to-work bonuses

By: - December 17, 2021

The return-to-work incentive program put forth by Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte in May will likely have delivered $1,200 bonuses to around 3,000 people by the end of its lifespan come January, officials with the Department of Labor and Industry said this week, only a quarter of the 12,000 individuals the state once anticipated paying. The […]

State, plaintiffs still dueling in challenge to Supreme Court election-by-district bill

By: - December 16, 2021

Montana Secretary of State Christi Jacobsen asked a district court in Butte last week for summary judgment in a legal challenge to House Bill 325, a legislative ballot referral passed this year that, if approved by voters in 2022, would require state supreme court justices to be elected by district. The state argued that the […]

Montana’s federal infrastructure allocation still an open question

By: - December 15, 2021

Montana, like other states, stands to gain billions of dollars from the recently signed federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a $1.2 trillion bill that emerged as one of the top legislative priorities of the new presidential administration. But state officials here are anxiously awaiting more — or in some cases, any — information on […]

DOR, lawmakers clear roadblock in marijuana rulemaking

By: - December 13, 2021

A state legislative panel has reached tentative consensus with the Montana Department of Revenue on a series of recreational marijuana regulations that lawmakers informally objected to in a meeting last week, resolving — at least for now — the latest in a series of hiccups that have cropped up as the state nears the launch […]

Legislative GOP asks U.S. Supreme Court for review of subpoena power decision

By: - December 7, 2021

The Montana Legislature and attorney general are looking for the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on a unanimous state court ruling that found a series of legislative subpoenas for judicial records were improper and overbroad, an expected though not guaranteed escalation in an inter-branch legal drama that consumed much of the last legislative session. […]