Blair Miller

Blair Miller

Blair Miller is a reporter based in Helena who primarily covers government, climate and courts. He's been a journalist for more than 12 years, previously based in Denver, Albuquerque and mid-Missouri.

Judge grants restraining order blocking abortion licensure requirement from taking effect

By: - September 27, 2023

A judge in Helena issued a temporary restraining order temporarily blocking a law set to take effect Oct. 1 that would have required Montana abortion clinics to be licensed in order to operate. Lewis and Clark County District Court Judge Christopher Abbott issued the order in part, he wrote, because the state has not developed […]

Billings man charged with threatening to kill Tester, Biden

By: - September 27, 2023

A Billings man was charged this week with threatening to murder Montana Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Tester and President Joe Biden, according to an indictment unsealed in federal court. Anthony James Cross was indicted on two counts related to the threats on Sept. 14 – threats to injure and murder a U.S. senator and threats […]

The Clemow Cow Camp land that Western Rivers Conservancy purchased in August 2022, then conveyed to the Beaverhead-Deerlodge Natonal Forest in September 2023. (Photo by Jordan Siemens, courtesy of Western Rivers Conservancy)

Beaverhead-Deerlodge forest acquires land targeted for water conservation in Big Hole system

By: - September 26, 2023

A western rivers conservancy group has transferred 317 acres of land to the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest that includes tributaries to the Big Hole River in what advocates say is an effort to protect recreation access and conserve more water in a river system already under threat by climate change. Western Rivers Conservancy had bought the […]

Groups ask judge to halt Montana wolf trapping season over alleged threat to grizzlies

By: - September 25, 2023

Two conservation groups have asked a federal judge in Missoula to halt the upcoming wolf trapping season in parts of Montana over concerns that grizzly bears could be injured or killed by the traps in violation of the Endangered Species Act. The Missoula-based Flathead-Lolo-Bitterroot Task Force and western nonprofit WildEarth Guardians asked for a preliminary […]

The reconstructed bridge near Reed Point on July 24, 2023, which was the site of a Montana Rail Link train derailment and bridge collapse on June 27.

People advised to stop eating any fish from Yellowstone River near site of derailment

By: - September 25, 2023

Montana wildlife and environmental officials last week issued an advisory telling people not to consume any fish taken from the Yellowstone River for several miles up- and downstream of the site of the train derailment and chemical spill that happened in June near Reed Point. Additionally, officials said because trout species that live in the […]

Fort Belknap’s lending operations under scrutiny in federal courts outside Montana

By: - September 18, 2023

Questions from the Fort Belknap tribal council and new board about Island Mountain Development Group’s finances and whether any of its former practices could risk Fort Belknap’s sovereignty are also being asked by attorneys around the country who have alleged in court filings the tribe is exploiting lower-income people with its high-interest lending companies. Several […]

Ryan Busse, a former firearms executive from Kalispell, speaks at a July 10, 2023, rally urging the Gianforte administration to opt into a federal program to help feed hungry children.

Former firearms executive Ryan Busse announces Democratic Montana governor bid

By: - September 14, 2023

Ryan Busse, a former firearm company executive and author from Kalispell, announced Thursday his Democratic bid for Montana’s governor’s office. He launched his campaign with a 2 ½ minute video ad proclaiming himself as a ranch kid, hunter, fisherman, husband and father with Montana values while attacking Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte’s policies on property taxes, […]

Rent-a-tribe or sovereign immunity: Fort Belknap lawsuit exposes legal gray areas of payday lending

By: - September 13, 2023

Scroll to the bottom of the websites for Target Cash Now, Bright Lending and Cash Advance Now – the three lending companies Island Mountain Development Group currently runs – and one will find lengthy disclaimers noting the companies are wholly-owned by the Fort Belknap Indian Community and licensed under its Tribal Regulatory Authority. Each also […]

Fort Belknap company, council members sue ex-attorney over alleged financial conspiracy

By: - September 12, 2023

A longtime lawyer for a Fort Belknap Indian Community company that generates most of the reservation’s revenue faces accusations in a newly filed lawsuit that she was behind alleged financial mismanagement of the company that has caused deep divides, and potentially put hundreds of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars at risk in northern […]

Lawyers deny politics involved in ethics complaint against Montana attorney general

By: - September 8, 2023

The formal ethics complaint filed against Attorney General Austin Knudsen alleging he violated state rules of professional conduct is extraordinary in the number of allegations it contains, and because it has reached this stage in the process, attorneys with longtime involvement in such cases said this week – but they assured no political games were […]

Grizzly that killed woman near West Yellowstone euthanized after breaking into home

By: - September 7, 2023

The grizzly bear that killed a woman near West Yellowstone earlier this summer was killed over the weekend after it broke through the kitchen window of a house and took dog food from inside. The 10-year-old female grizzly was captured Saturday evening after it and its cub broke into the home near West Yellowstone that […]

The Montana Club building located at 24 West 6th Avenue in downtown Helena.

Helena’s Montana Club plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

By: - August 31, 2023

The president of the Original Montana Club Cooperative Association board said the co-op plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy imminently to try to avoid foreclosure and keep the historic club in downtown Helena running with a bar and restaurant into the future. Shareholders for the association voted unanimously last week to authorize the board […]