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Theater Board Hosts St. Patty's Day FUN-Raiser

Theater Board Hosts St. Patty’s Day FUN-Raiser

Broadwater Community Theater (BCT) will be hosting their annual fundraiser on Saturday, March 16th at The Lodge, 131 So. Spruce Street. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. Live music a silent auction, good food and refreshments will run until 8 p.m. Tickets will be available at Reading Leaves and Broadwater Blooms. Ticket cost is $20 per person, cash or check only.

Members of the board encourage community members to attend, enjoy complimentary charcuterie and check out the many wonderful auction items donated by local businesses. The evening will include Irish and old country music performed by the Helena Handbasket fiddle quartet, Terry and Jim Gundersen and Candace and Dave Payne. Come down for fun and games with cash prizes as well as a 50/50 raffle hosted by our beloved leprechaun, Pat O’Trick.

The year 2024 has many events in store for Broadwater Theater including the Queen City Swing band March 23, Missoula Children’s Theater this May, and two additional children’s plays later this year. Help propel BCT forward into success this year so they can continue to bring wonderful plays and live music to this community.

We hope to see you there.

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Broadwater County Unveils Draft Growth Policy Update

March 4, 2024

Broadwater County Unveils Draft Growth Policy Update for Public Review and Feedback

Broadwater County, Montana, March 4, 2024 — Broadwater County officials announced the release of a draft Growth Policy Update for public review and comments until March 31, 2024. This document, crafted with careful consideration and community and stakeholder input, outlines a strategic vision for sustainable development and growth within the county.

The Growth Policy Update serves as a vital roadmap for the future, guiding land use decisions, infrastructure development, and resource management. Broadwater County recognizes the importance of thoughtful planning to preserve the unique character and quality of life that residents value while fostering economic growth and opportunity.

After several public meetings in both the north and south sub areas of the County, the Commissioners are excited to present the draft Growth Policy Update to the County residents. This document reflects our commitment to guided, responsible growth and demonstrates the importance of resident input in the planning process. We invite all residents and stakeholders to provide feedback during this additional comment period.

Key highlights of the draft Growth Policy Update include:

• Strategies for balanced development that respects environmental conservation and natural resources

• Strategies and guiding principles to promote economic diversity and resilience, supporting local businesses and industries

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Conservation Easements on the Menu for Area landowners

On Tuesday, February 27, over sixty producers from Broadwater and Lewis & Clark Counties joined staff from The Montana Land Reliance (MLR) and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Townsend to discuss agricultural land conservation easement opportunities.

According to the MLR website, owning a farm or ranch includes the rights to do whatever the owner wants. He can subdivide, construct buildings, irrigate, harvest timber, restrict access or sell or lease the ground. When a farmer or rancher enters into a conservation easement with his land, he agrees to keep or give up some of those rights to meet the restrictions of the easement. His advantage is he may reduce his income, estate and gift taxes for putting his land in perpetuity under the easement agreement. Conservation Easements may include passing the ground on to family members.

Linda Davis, whose generational family operates a ranch near Toston, said she and her husband Bob attended the workshop to learn about the program. She felt easements were “worth considering” but would be a good deal of work and a lot of time invested to get an easement in place. Bob wondered whether he and his family would want to have another partner such as Montana Land Reliance in his operation. “While the program sounds good now, conservation easement policies may change in the future. I don’t know if I want to saddle my grandkids with that,” he said.

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Speech and Drama Columbus Divisional Tournament

Speech and Drama Columbus Divisional Tournament

Melissa Guderjahn

The sub-zero weather may have canceled the home Speech, Debate & Drama meet, but it certainly did not cool off the Bulldog’s hot streak!

The Broadwater team brought home the Class B Drama Championship trophy from their Divisional Tournament in Columbus over the weekend. The state is split into three divisions, combining both Class B and C schools. Broadwater falls within the Southern division which also includes: Belfry, Columbus, Ennis, Florence-Carlton, Fromberg, Gardiner, Harlowton, Jefferson, Joliet, Loyola Sacred Heart, Manhattan/Manhattan Christian, Powell, Reed Point, Red Lodge, Sheridan, Sweetgrass, Three Forks, Twin Bridges, West Yellowstone, Whitehall, and White Sulphur Springs.

The kids all compete together (regardless of their class) within their event and if they advance to the final round of eight, earn points for their team. The team trophies are then awarded for the top teams in Speech & Debate for both Class B and Class C, as well as the top teams in Drama for both Class B and Class C.

The first medals of the evening were indeed First Place medals, which went to Jazlyn Martin, Haylie Reinke, Melania Lambott and Sarah Morgan. Their Dramatic Theatre piece which earned them a Divisional Championship is titled “I Was There” and is an emotional look into what students might experience in a school shooting event.

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Bruce Seeds Receives Grant Award

Bruce Seeds Receives Grant Award

Allison Kosto

MSU Broadwater County Extension Agent

HELENA, Mont. – Director Christy Clark and the Agriculture Development Council announced recipients of the state’s $818,954 investment in innovative, value-added agriculture projects through the Montana Department of Agriculture’s Growth Through Agriculture (GTA) program.

From Plevna to Kalispell, a total of 22 agricultural businesses throughout the state were awarded funds to advance Montana’s agricultural economy.

“Year after year, MDA’s Growth Through Agriculture program focuses on giving our agricultural businesses the opportunity to grow and expand in order to add more value to their product and improve their bottom lines,” Montana Director of Agriculture Christy Clark said. “The Department of Agriculture is proud to invest in these innovative projects that will add value to Montana agriculture as well as contribute to economic development and local communities.”

The GTA program was established by the Montana Legislature in 1987 to strengthen and diversify Montana’s agriculture industry through the development of new agricultural products and processes.

The GTA program offers funding in the form of a grant or loan or both and funding is determined by a seven-member Agriculture Development Council (Council) during scheduled meetings. The Council members are appointed by the Governor. Growth Through Agriculture funding requires the investment of at least $1 in matching funds for every $1 in program grant or loan assistance received.

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Former Congressman Denny Rehberg announces bid for Montana’s eastern House district

This article was originally published by the Montana Free Press on Feb 21, 2024.


The article is published here courtesy of the Montana Free Press

Denny Rehburg, a Republican who represented Montana in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2001 to 2013, is running for Montana’s eastern congressional district this year, he announced on a conservative news radio show Wednesday.

Speaking with Montana Talks host Aaron Flint, Rehberg touted his previous experience in Congress as an asset in an already crowded Republican primary.

“I always say, I know where the bathroom door is, but I also know the system,” Rehberg told Flint. “I know how to make my way around. And really what you do in Congress is you build coalitions of like-minded people. And when you get 218, you win. And having the friends that I’ve got in Congress, there are issues that we need to work on, we can work together on.”

Rehberg, who last served in Congress when Donald Trump was a reality television star, also trumpeted his support of the former president.

“I wanted to go back to Washington to help Donald Trump as president. I’m wholeheartedly behind him,” he told Flint.

Rehberg is the eighth Republican to seek election to Montana’s eastern district, a deeply Republican swath of the state that stretches from Helena to Montana’s borders with the Dakotas. Already, prominent statewide Republicans like Superintendent of Public Instruction Elsie Arntzen and state auditor Troy Downing have filed to run for the seat, along with a smattering of current and former lawmakers and others.

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Rosendale Withdraws from US Senate Race

Rosendale Withdraws from US Senate Race

Matt Rosendale

Instead of one of those phony statements from politicians, here’s my statement on why I’m withdrawing my candidacy for the U.S. Senate.

As everyone knows, I have planned to run for the US Senate and to win both the primary and the general election. However, the day I announced, President Trump then announced that he was endorsing a different candidate.

I have long been a supporter of the President, and remain so. But I have been forced to calculate what my chances of success would be with Trump supporting my opponent. This race was already going to be tough, as I was fighting against Mitch McConnell and the rest of the Republican establishment in Washington. But I felt like I could beat them, as the voters do not agree with them choosing who would be the next U.S. Senator from Montana.

However, by my calculations, with Trump endorsing my opponent and the lack of resources, the hill was just too steep. I spoke with Senator Daines earlier this week and we both agree that this is the best path forward for Republicans to regain the majority in the U.S. Senate.

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Congressman Zinke Endorses Hedalen for Montana Office of Public Instruction

Congressman Zinke Endorses Hedalen for Montana Office of Public Instruction

Susie Hedalen

HELENA, MT) Today, Congressman Zinke announced his endorsement for Susie Hedalen as Montana’s next Superintendent at the Office of Public Instruction.

“Susie Hedalen will make a fantastic leader at the Office of Public Instruction,” Zinke said. “Her background, education, experiences, and demonstrated commitment to empowering parents to take active roles in their children’s education make her a great candidate who can hit the ground running in keeping Montana’s kids ahead of the curve and with a competitive edge.”


Susie Hedalen has previously served as Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction before being appointed to the Board of Public Education by Governor Greg Gianforte.

Susie Hedalen has worked all across the state in Class AA to Class C schools.

Susie Hedalen has received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Montana State University, and in addition to extensive work with the tribes, she has a certificate in Native American Studies.

Susie lives in Townsend with her husband, Derrick, where she serves as Superintendent of Townsend School District.

Susie has been on the frontlines of education in Montana for over a decade. She knows what we need to do to protect our children and make sure they are getting a quality education, and that means getting education back to basics.

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County, State DNRC chastised Judge Blocks Horse Creek Hills Subdivision

County, State DNRC chastised

Judge Blocks Horse Creek Hills Subdivision

Amanda Eggert

Montana Free Press

This article was written by Amanda Eggert and was originally published by the Montana Free Press on February 15, 2024, and is published here courtesy of the Montana Free Press.


NOTE: The article states that Judge Michael McMahon is a Broadwater County judge. He is NOT a Broadwater County Judge. He is a district Court Judge.

A Broadwater County judge ruled this week in favor of a small coalition of landowners and water rights holders who challenged a subdivision proposed for an area already grappling with water supply and quality issues.

In a sprawling, 85-page order, Broadwater County District Court Judge Michael McMahon chastised the Broadwater County Commission for authorizing preliminary plat approval of the Horse Creek Hills subdivision near Canyon Ferry, despite an “abjectly deficient” environmental assessment that failed to take into account impacts to water quantity, water quality, public safety and wildlife.

McMahon offered similarly sharp language for another defendant, the Department of Natural Resources, accusing the state agency of demonstrating “hostility” toward a 2009 Montana Supreme Court decision that narrowed a 51-year-old loophole that allows a landowner to develop groundwater without demonstrating there will be no adverse impacts to those who hold existing water rights. Developers have been using that loophole with increasing frequency to facilitate low-density development in areas of Montana lacking unallocated surface water rights.

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Congressman Matt Rosendale Launches U.S. Senate Campaign

Congressman Matt Rosendale Launches U.S. Senate Campaign

Matt Rosendale


HELENA, MT – Today, Congressman Matt Rosendale (MT-02) officially declared his candidacy for the United States Senate at the Montana Secretary of State's office in Helena. The announcement event was attended by numerous America First state legislators and supporters.

“For decades, Mitch McConnell and the Washington Establishment have sold the American people short," said Rep. Rosendale. “They’ve been the architects of a $34 trillion debt, the invasion taking place at the southern border, allowing China to spy on Americans and emerge as the global superpower, all while enriching their friends with the Green New Deal, at the taxpayer’s expense.

“Montanans are sick and tired of having Washington work against them, which is why you sent me to Congress to be your voice. Since I’ve been elected, I’ve kept my promise to fight for you and stand up to the Uniparty.

“Having served in the Montana State Legislature, I know what a functioning governing body looks like, which is why I was proud of the work a handful of my colleagues and I did last January to restore regular order to the U.S. House of Representatives. Those changes included single-subject legislation, 72 hours to review bills, and offering amendments on the Floor. These changes allowed us to pass legislation to secure our border, restore America’s energy dominance, hold China accountable, and reduce spending.

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