BOZEMAN — Cole Norskog was one of four students to graduate from Stanford High School in the spring of 2016. Now, as a Montana State University student, he is one of several hundred students in some of the lecture classes he attends.

“It takes some getting used to,” Norskog said of the difference in class sizes. “I went through high school fairly smoothly; it was easy to pay attention and get ‘As.’ Here, you have to stay on top of your stuff or you’ll get left behind.”

Montana budget picture starts shaping up amid cash shortfall

HELENA, Mont. (AP) -- A budget analysis shows the work that the Montana Legislature has done so far this session would leave the state in the black financially but with about half the cash reserves that Gov. Steve Bullock wants....

Secretary of State, GOP chair oppose mail-in ballot

HELENA, Mont. (AP) -- Montana's secretary of state and the chairman of the state Republican party oppose a mail-in ballot for an expected special election to replace U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke, saying that while it would save counties money it would give Democrats an advantage....

FFA clubs find a regular home in most Montana high schools. Throughout the year many Fergus FFA students utilize FFA as an opportunity to learn, experience, travel and compete.  

KXLO Live visited with several Fergus FFA members about their plans for the remainder of the current school year.  According to member Casey Bawden:

A couple of weeks ago free home-made soup was given away in Lewistown.

Russell Epperson says the hot menu treat will be repeated again this Saturday at the Community Cupboard building, and may become a regular monthly activity sponsored by a group of community minded cooks.  

Legislative Reports

February Legislative Reports

Feb. 1

State of Tribal Nations

Feb. 2

Feb. 3

State of Education

Feb. 6

Feb. 7

Feb. 8

Feb. 9

Feb. 10

Feb. 13

Feb. 14

Feb. 15

Feb. 16

Feb. 17

Feb. 20

Feb. 21

Feb. 22

Feb. 22 Daines

January Legislative Reports

 Jan. 6

Jan. 9

Jan. 10

Jan. 12

Jan. 13

Jan. 16

Jan. 17

Jan. 18

Jan. 19

Jan. 20

Women's March

Jan. 23

Jan. 24

State of the State

Jan. 25

Jan. 26

Jan. 27

 

Jan. 30

Jan. 31

LEWISTOWN AREA CONSTRUCTION PROJECT REPORT

ACTIVE PROJECTS:

East Parrot Creek Road (Roundup Area)    A bridge project over the Musselshell River is in progress on this county road; beginning 7 miles northeast of Roundup (where Parrot Creek Road meets US 12) and continuing on the county road to 0.5 miles from US 87 south of Roundup. Contractor’s plans are to begin work Tuesday February 21, 2017; work will be off the road and will have no impact to traffic.  Travelers will continue to be detoured until the bridge deck is cured and the new alignment is complete.  Travelers should expect a detour, loose gravel, reduced speeds, and a gravel surface.  (Reported only locally)   *PM James Stevenson 657-0242

Helena - On January 19, the MDT Aeronautics Division along with the Montana Aeronautics Board awarded a little over $600,000 in loans and grants to various Montana airports as part of its annual loan and grant program. 

The program, developed 23 years ago, has become a welcome contributor to Montana airports.  At any given time, there is usually over a million dollars of Aeronautics Division funds obligated to various airport projects around the State.  There was about $232,500 in grants and about $371,000 in loans available for disbursement this year for aviation projects around the State.  Although most of the money given in grants and loans each year goes to leverage 90/10 Federal (FAA) match dollars for large airport construction projects, there is usually a significant percentage awarded for various smaller airport projects as well. 

It’s a lengthy process officials follow in planning their budgets, and to plan their annual school election.

Lewistown school District 1 Business Manager Rebekah Rhoades has that schedule while the state legislature has yet to determine state funding.

The search continues for Lewistown’s new Superintendent of schools.  Current Superintendent Jason Butcher  reviews the process and time-table for his replacement.

In today’s agriculture education students prepare for judging at an early age.  They meet, practice and compete through 4-h judging programs.

Locally Josh Stroh is their coach who prepares members for distant competition sessions.  

Outpacing addiction in Lewistown are a couple organizations: TORCH, Young People in Recovery (YPR).

Laurie Sweeney and James Phelps say there are ways to support, and friends to help those in recovery.

Maintaining balance is an important health concern for any age.  Every few months the Central Montana Medical Center sponsors classes to help prevent falling. Paxton Mitchell reports the next session will start on March 2.

The world’s top motorcycle racing instructor Keith Code holds a team position with the foundation for a drug free world. One of his priorities is how parents can effectively talk to their children about drugs. He told his KXLO-Live audience:

The city has joined Snowy Mountain Development Corporation to find a use for the Broadway Apartment Building.

It’s a long-term project that involves grant money.  The city is examining CDBG programs for this project.  City Manager Holly Phelps explains how the grant will benefit the owner.

Large and small communities depend on a variety of services which to the American Red Cross constantly responds.   

John Koch, Lewistown Red Cross Director, outlines how disasters and emergency services are handled by his organization.

Ruby’s restaurant in Lewistown has partnered with local 4-H by donating .25 cents for every combo meal sold during February.  

Ruby’s uses only Montana beef, meat not augmented with fillers such as soy, cracker crumbs and broth.  Some other ground beef sold throughout the state is said to come from outside Montana, often outside the USA.

The Lewistown City Commission  was updated recently about monies not received for the Meadow Housing Complex, and a building code seminar scheduled for next month.

City Manager Holly Phelps tells KXLO:

HELENA, Mont. – Five Montana communities are working with the Montana Department of Commerce Community Development Division to plan and develop affordable housing options thanks to new funding through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Montana will receive $3 million from HUD’s Housing Trust Fund to build or rehabilitate long-term affordable housing units.
 
“We’re excited to have an additional resource to make sure more Montanans have safe and secure affordable housing,” said Community Development Division Administrator Jennifer Olson. “The Housing Trust Fund will help towns address their housing needs and continue to build vibrant communities.”
The five communities that have submitted their initial proposals for the funding include: Havre, Lewistown, Livingston, Missoula and Wolf Point/Culbertson. Each community is now invited to submit their final application. Awards will be made this spring.

A Lewistown man was honored during Monday night’s City Commission meeting that cited his public service and dedication.

City Commission Chairman Dave Byerly voiced, by proclamation, businessman Don Pfau for his many efforts and community projects.

It’s official Lewistown has a City Manager.  City Commission Chairman Dave Byerly reviews the appointment made during Monday night’s meeting.

Tax filing day is April 15.  That date may be stressful for some, but according to tax consultant and author Dan Pilla who has written extensively on the subject, ‘take heart’  and  check his web-site for some helpful information.

Central Montana Foundation (CMF) gave away nearly $13,000 at its January meeting to three local not-for-profit organizations. Recipients were Lewistown Arts and Entertainment District, $4,999.99 for banners and new hardware to display throughout downtown; Lewistown Area Chamber of Commerce, $4,999 to be used to help purchase fireworks for the 4th of July display; and Fergus Junior Class After-Prom Party, $2,500 for expenses related to this annual event.

Central Montana Foundation President Dean Comes said the Foundation awards grants to non-for-profit and tax-exempt Central Montana organizations from the income earned on 10 unrestricted permanent endowments. The principal remains intact, and the monthly income allows CMF to grant funds for the betterment of Central Montana. In 2016, CMF granted nearly $215,000 from those unrestricted funds.

MONTANA – Governor Steve Bullock today announced $316,314 in funding for development and enhancement of tourism infrastructure in 11 Montana communities.

“Montana’s tourism economy is strong and growing, attracting millions of folks from across the world to enjoy our public lands and wide open spaces,” said Governor Steve Bullock. “These funds help our communities increase the economic impact of tourism and take advantage of innovative new marketing opportunities.”

The funds are being made available through the Montana Department of Commerce, Office of Tourism and Business Development Tourism Grant Program. The program awards funds to projects that strengthen Montana’s economy through the development and enhancement of the state’s tourism industry. The program offers funding in three categories: tourism digital development, tourism infrastructure and tourism event paid media advertising.

For the second consecutive year, the Montana Mental Health Nursing Care Center in Lewistown has achieved the highest rating possible from the annual U. S. News and World Report Best Nursing Homes for 2016-17.

Through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Five-Star Quality Rating System, the Nursing Care Center earned the highest 5-star mark. 

Nursing Care Center administrator Dianne Scotten is quick to credit her staff for this accomplishment.