Northwestern Energy makes ‘substantial’ rate increase request to PSC

BY: - August 10, 2022

The largest utility company in Montana submitted a request to the state’s Public Service Commission for a “substantial” rate increase for residential electric and natural gas. If approved by the PSC, the average residential NorthWestern Energy customer would see a rate increase of $22.76 a month, or more than 25%, on their electric bill and […]

Montana senators split on Inflation Reduction Act, push to amend it

BY: - August 9, 2022

Both Montana Senators took cracks at the Inflation Reduction Act during the almost 24-hour “vote-a-rama” that started Saturday evening and ended with 51-50 approval and Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie.  Montana Sens. Jon Tester and Steve Daines voted with their respective parties, and both senators used the lengthy session to bring forward some […]

U.S. Senate passes major health, tax and climate bill in boost for Democrats

BY: and - August 7, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate, along party lines, passed a sweeping energy, health care, climate and tax package Sunday afternoon, following an overnight marathon of votes that resulted in just a handful of notable changes to the legislation. The 755-page bill was passed after Vice President Kamala Harris broke a 50-50 tie in the evenly divided Senate. […]

U.S. Senate preps big tax, climate and health bill after deal struck with Sinema

BY: - August 5, 2022

U.S. Senate Democrats’ wide-ranging tax, climate and health bill appears set to pass after Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona struck a deal to soften the measure’s corporate tax increase and a second tax hike aimed at wealthy finance-sector workers, Schumer told reporters Friday. The revenue lost to obtain Sinema’s support […]

USDA, state want to put more Montana food on Treasure State tables

BY: - August 4, 2022

The Montana Department of Agriculture wants to keep homegrown food on local dinner tables and so it has signed a cooperative agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture to promote local producers. The USDA granted Montana $600,000 from the $400 million Local Food Purchase Assistance Cooperative Agreement Program as part of the Biden administration’s […]

Inflation exacts a heavier toll on rural Americans than on urban households

BY: - August 4, 2022

Barbara Kalbach is a fourth-generation family farmer and a registered nurse from Dexter, Iowa, and she commutes 17 miles every time she needs to go to work, the store or the doctor. The Kalbachs, along with other rural households, are experiencing a greater strain on their disposable income than their urban counterparts due to inflation. […]

Meat processed in Montana facilities more than doubled in the last fiscal year.

BY: - August 2, 2022

Gov. Greg Gianforte announced Tuesday that meat processed in Montana facilities more than doubled in the last fiscal year. “Montana meat processors continued their strong momentum, more than doubling the amount of meat processed over the last year,” Gianforte said in a press release. “This news is a testament to the Montana work ethic, and […]

Record rent increases, low wages are driving an eviction crisis, U.S. Senate panel told

BY: - August 2, 2022

WASHINGTON — Witnesses in a Tuesday hearing detailed to a U.S. Senate committee how investors and stagnant wages are driving an eviction and housing crisis across the U.S. The chair of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, said that families are being priced out of buying homes, and rising […]

Investors bought nearly a quarter of U.S. homes last year, driving up prices

BY: - August 1, 2022

Investors bought nearly a quarter of U.S. single-family homes that sold last year, often driving up rents for suburban families in the process. The issue is especially acute in some Sun Belt states amid evidence that investors often can outbid other buyers, keeping starter homes out of the hands of would-be owners, especially suburban Black […]

Democrats in Congress press Biden to extend pause on student loans

BY: - July 29, 2022

WASHINGTON  — More than 100 congressional Democrats are urging the White House to extend the pause on student loan repayment beyond the Aug. 31 deadline. In a Thursday letter to President Joe Biden and Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, U.S. Senate and House Democrats argue that due to inflation and an ongoing coronavirus pandemic, student loan borrowers […]

U.S. Senate Democrats dive into details of surprise 725-page reconciliation bill

BY: - July 28, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden took a preliminary victory lap Thursday to celebrate Democrats striking a surprise deal on a sweeping legislative package that renewed hopes of historic action on the party’s health care, tax and climate goals. But just down Pennsylvania Avenue, Senate Democrats said they needed to read through the bill text to […]

Strong economy, declining gas prices have escaped notice, White House says

BY: - July 28, 2022

After making a fight against inflation its “top priority,” the Biden administration says aspects of the economy are robust, even if headlines haven’t reflected that. Senior administration officials promoted Biden’s economic record on a call with local reporters Wednesday on positive economic indicators — mainly low unemployment and falling gas prices — ahead of a […]