Montana Free Press 2023 01 31

From the reporters, editors & supporters of MTFP in Helena and far-flung Montana.

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Groups seek federal protections for Arctic grayling

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to adequately account for climate change impacts and a lack of regulatory safeguards for river-dwelling Arctic Grayling, environmentalists argue in a lawsuit filed Jan. 30. By Amanda Eggert

Resolution on new House and Senate districts is sailing through the Legislature

A resolution containing lawmakers’ feedback on newly drawn state House and Senate districts is sailing through the legislative process ahead of a deadline next month. By Arren Kimbel-Sannit

Bill would penalize officials who fail to hand over records to legislative auditors

Proposed legislation making its way through the Montana Senate seeks to clarify the responsibility that state agencies have to provide certain information to legislative auditors. By Arren Kimbel-Sannit

Trust, perception and Montana elections

Heading into the 2023 session, Montana was primed for a pitched policy debate over the integrity and security of its election process. Now the conversation among lawmakers has kicked loose questions about trust, perception and how extensive the case for change truly is. By Alex Sakariassen

Committee debates medical ‘right of conscience’ bill

A bill that would allow medical institutions, providers and other health care employees to deny services based on their “ethical, moral, or religious beliefs or principles” was the subject of intense debate Monday during an initial committee hearing, setting up a conflict over rights of providers and patients. By Mara Silvers

The Session: A speech, a crowded hearing room and the cost of defending laws

Governor Greg Gianforte delivers a State of the State address that focuses on economic growth but lawmakers are turning their attention to social issues. By MTFP Staff

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