Author

Keila Szpaller

Keila Szpaller

Keila Szpaller is deputy editor of the Daily Montanan and covers education. Before joining States Newsroom Montana, she served as city editor of the Missoulian, the largest news outlet in western Montana.

Montana Board of Public Ed takes up new charter schools, including one with for-profit company

By: - January 22, 2024

A controversial online charter school that would be run by a for-profit company will take another shot at approval from the Montana Board of Public Education after a superintendent withdrew its application Friday. Last year, the Montana Legislature approved a couple of bills that opened the door to more charter schools, and at its meeting […]

Montana Public Service Commission announces new executive director

By: - January 19, 2024

The Montana Public Service Commission announced Friday the appointment of David Sanders as its new executive director. The PSC described Sanders as a fourth-generation Montanan with more than three decades of experience in federal, state and local government. The executive director will serve as the agency’s chief administrative and fiscal officer and director of communications, […]

Liberal group alleges failure to disclose finances by Senate candidate Sheehy

By: - January 19, 2024

A liberal group is alleging Senate candidate and multimillionaire Tim Sheehy failed to reveal all his financial holdings in a disclosure statement, according to the request for an investigation from End Citizens United. The Hill first reported the allegations, but an ethicist told the publication the question was whether Sheehy, a Republican and businessman who […]

Montana health department pushes back on legislators’ request for data on Medicaid enrollment

By: - January 18, 2024

Telephone hold times can take three to six hours, but assisted living director of operations Michael Coe said he knows one way to get a resident bumped up the health department’s priority list for a Medicaid waiver. “Really, the only way to get service for somebody is to threaten to evict them,” said Coe, with […]

NorthWestern touts coal, natural gas, in meeting record energy demand

By: - January 17, 2024

Last week, wind contributed more to power generation than coal for about 30 hours on the grid NorthWestern Energy oversees, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. And for more than five days, generation from coal fell to nearly half its capacity, according to EIA data for the same region and period. “It […]

Grizzly bears could be restored to the Bitterroot ecosystem

By: - January 17, 2024

Grizzlies have been spotted in the Bitterroot, but the ecosystem doesn’t have an “established population.” This week, however, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a public scoping period to consider options for restoring grizzly bears to the Bitterroot ecosystem — although it said one option is not taking any action. (It said an “established […]

Elmo mother reunited with child after Montana Supreme Court finds ‘gross injustice’

By: - January 11, 2024

Shanna ManyWounds and her little boy were reunited in Oregon last week and arrived home in Montana, according to her lawyers. “I can’t remember the last time I felt so good about the outcome of a case, primarily for Shanna and (the child), but also for the justice system in the State of Montana,” said […]

UM athletic director ahead of Grizzlies’ FCS championship game: ‘I always predict that we’ll win’

By: - January 5, 2024

University of Montana Athletic Director Kent Haslam was standing in the corner of the end zone during the FCS semifinal in Missoula when Corbin Walker intercepted a pass in double overtime that sealed a victory for the Montana Grizzlies. “First thing I did was look for any yellow flags on the field to make sure […]

Rep. Rosendale calls for town hall in Great Falls about Chinese spy balloon

By: - January 3, 2024

U.S. Rep. Matt Rosendale wants President Joe Biden to host a town hall meeting in Great Falls so people can ask questions about the Chinese spy balloon and recent reports about it from NBC News. NBC recently reported the Biden administration wanted to keep the balloon a secret from Congress and the public and that […]

Montana Supreme Court removes Lake County District Court judge from child custody case

By: - January 3, 2024

Shanna ManyWounds will be reunited with her little boy after a Lake County District Court Judge abruptly ordered him taken away from his mom in September. In an order Tuesday, the Montana Supreme Court found Judge Deborah Kim Christopher’s decision to be contrary to the child’s best interests, against the advice of the court’s own […]

NorthWestern residential bills to drop this month

By: - January 2, 2024

The electricity bill for NorthWestern Energy residential customers is slated to drop slightly this month from last month — from $112.94 to $105.14 — according to the utility. The amount includes at least one factor that is still subject to review and verification by the Montana Public Service Commission. NorthWestern Energy spokesperson Jo Dee Black […]

Pornhub blocks access by Montanans, citing bill to protect minors

By: - December 30, 2023

An adult content website that’s blocking Montanans from pornography has Sen. Willis Curdy expecting a bill he sponsored will be challenged in court sooner or later. Curdy, a Missoula Democrat, said adjustments are part of the legislative process, and changes can be made, but his goal is clear. “The point is I just want to […]