Scott Zoltan

KECI Reporter

POSTED: 12:45 PM Jun 13 2012   UPDATED: 9:04 AM Mar 04 2015

Contact Info

scott zoltan

Scott Zoltan became a reporter for NBC Montana in August 2011. He got his first taste of journalism at an early age, writing articles for his hometown newspaper in San Diego. When he arrived at the University of Oregon, he made the transition from print to broadcast and graduated with a B.A. in Journalism: Electronic Media. In his time at school, Scott reported for a student newscast and served as Multimedia Editor for the school's newspaper.

In Summer 2010 he ventured eastward for an internship at a PBS affiliate in Albany, New York. He worked for New York Now, a weekly statewide public affairs program. Scott divided his time between the studio and the Capitol, covering the primary elections and the summer budget crisis.

Upon graduating, Scott worked for an online environmental news start-up in Eugene, Oregon, before making his way to beautiful Montana.

He's excited to be reporting for NBC Montana. When he's not reporting the news, Scott likes to read, hike and hit the slopes.

Please email Scott with any questions, comments or story ideas.

Scott Zoltan's Latest Stories

Crews responding to wildfire near Rock Creek

On Sunday afternoon fire crews responded to a wildfire burning near Rock Creek, roughly 25 miles east of Missoula. The fire burnt roughly 5 acres on the south side of I-90, near the Beavertail exit.

Missoula FY2016 budget includes $380k for City Council

Missoula council sets date for hearing on exotic animal ordinance

On Monday night, Missoula's city council set a date for a public hearing, on August 10, about a potential ban on exotic animal performances.

Video emerges of altercation involving off-duty Missoula officer

Video captures altercation involving off-duty Missoula police officer

This weekend, NBC Montana learned that the Missoula County Sheriff's Office responded to a scuffle at the Missoula Celtic Festival on Friday that involved an off-duty Missoula police officer.

Fire danger remains very high in Missoula

Fire danger remains very high in Missoula

Fire officials from multiple agencies around Missoula County decided Monday to keep the local fire danger designation at very high, with Stage I fire restrictions in effect.

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Researchers study how bears interact with electric fences

Researchers are studying bears in the Blackfoot Valley, looking at video of the animals trying to reach bait behind electric fences. Sometimes the fences are charged, and sometimes they aren't. It's all in an effort to find out what type of fence are effective without changing up bears' habitat.

One city council member pushes to raise minimum wage for city workers

Missoula City Council passes FY16 budget

Monday night, Missoula's city council voted 10-1 to adopt a fiscal year 2016 budget. Council members and Mayor John Engen have been hammering out the details of the budget for the last several weeks.

Lake Co. considers move to Stage II fire restrictions

Lolo NF crews monitor 8 lightning-caused fires

Fire officials said crews are keeping a close eye on new fire starts in the Lolo National Forest.

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New York man running across country makes stop in Montana

A dad from upstate New York is making his way across the country by foot, in an effort to raise awareness for children with disabilities. Shaun Evans' 9-year old son Shamus was born with Cerebral Palsy, and he's been pushing him in a special adaptive running chariot for parts of the trip.

Vehicle, prosthetic knee belonging to missing ND woman located

Authorities in Idaho and North Dakota have confirmed that a vehicle and a prosthetic knee belonging to Florence Dumontet, missing since 2011, have been located in the Lookout Pass area.

Montanans watch US women dominate World Cup

Montanans watch US women dominate World Cup

Scores of soccer fans poured into bars and restaurants across Western Montana to watch the US take on Japan in the Women's World Cup Final.

Board of Personnel takes another look at appeal for unionizing Bozeman City Fire Department managers

Fire departments report uneventful Fourth of July

NBC Montana checked in with fire departments across Western Montana and can report that authorities did not respond to any serious fireworks related incidents, despite historically dry conditions.

AC repair companies slammed during heat wave

AC repair companies slammed during heat wave

The persistent heat in Western Montana means air conditioner repair companies are slammed.

Missoula responders see spike in heat stroke patients

Missoula responders see spike in heat stroke patients

Missoula emergency responders are seeing heat stroke calls come in as the weather shows no sign of cooling down very much.

Missoula woman arrested after allegedly punching officer

Missoula authorities say 21-year old Tarina Ask, a Missoula resident, was arrested Saturday after allegedly hitting a Missoula police officer.

Demand for air conditioners high during heat wave

Demand for air conditioners high during heat wave

Triple-digits highs in parts of western Montana are prompting residents to buy up fans, air conditioners and anything else that will help them keep cool.

Missoula Made Fair

Missoula Made Fair draws crowd despite heat

The vendors at the twice-annual Missoula Made craft fair tell NBC Montana they are happy there was still a decent turnout, despite record temperatures Sunday.

Missoula city officials continue budget discussions

Missoula city officials continue budget discussions

On Monday night, Missoula City Council members held another public hearing regarding Mayor John Engen's preliminary Fiscal Year 2016 budget.

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Families head out for free fishing on Father's Day

Families around Western Montana headed out to cast a line over Father's Day weekend, with many taking advantage of Fish Wildlife and Park's free fishing weekend. The program allows for Montanans to fish without paying a license fee over the holiday weekend.

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Community group lights second Missoula bridge

On Sunday night, the community group "Light our Bridges Missoula" will be illuminating a second bridge in Missoula. Back in November, group members were able to flip the switch on a new light system at the Van Buren Street footbridge, and at 10:30 p.m. the group will light up the Madison Street walkway.

Missoula fire danger increasing to high

Missoula fire danger increasing to high

As of one minute after midnight, fire officials will move Missoula County's fire danger up to high.

Residents line up to buy old Wilma Theater seats

Residents line up to buy old Wilma Theater seats

Dozens of western Montana residents lined up at the historic Wilma Theater in Missoula Monday for the chance to take home some of the theater's old seats.

Missoula city council to consider ban on wearable tech while driving

Missoula council committee to discuss potential for new distracted driving rules

Later this month, a Missoula city council committee will discuss the potential for including in Missoula's distracted driving ordinance rules about the use of wearable technology, like smart watches, while driving.

New clothing boutique opens in Downtown Missoula

New clothing boutique opens in Downtown Missoula

The list of new shops and restaurants in Western Montana this summer continues to grow, with a brand new clothing store opening in Downtown Missoula.

Missoula city council to consider ban on wearable tech while driving

Missoula city council to consider ban on wearable tech while driving

Missoula city council members may soon consider a ban on using wearable technology while driving.

Monte Dolack gallery to close Downtown Missoula location

Monte Dolack gallery to close Downtown Missoula location

A Missoula art gallery that's been a downtown mainstay for more than 20 years will soon shut its doors.

Two arrested in Missoula after alleged BB or pellet gun incident

Two arrested in Missoula after alleged BB or pellet gun incident

On Sunday, Missoula police say officers arrested an adult male and a juvenile male near the intersection of Main and Ryman for assault with a weapon.

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Montana rivers could reach low levels

The National Weather Service says rivers across the state could reach levels lower than normal this summer.

Nuisance bear dies after climbing up Missoula tree

Nuisance bear dies after climbing up Missoula tree

Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks officials say a problem black bear met its demise in a Missoula neighborhood after falling out of a tree on Saturday.

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Committee launched to support Smart Schools 2020 bond package

On Tuesday, community leaders from around Missoula launched a new committee to lobby voters to approve two school bonds in November.

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Emails reveal complications with standardized testing

NBC Montana has uncovered new information about the Smarter Balanced assessment tests connected to Common Core.

Mountain Water

Missoula council approves Mountain Water claims, Hillview Way improvements

Monday night, Missoula's city council voted to allow improvements in the Hillview Way area.

3 students treated for injuries after Polson-area bus crash

Montana Highway Patrol troopers are investigating a crash that involved a school bus in Polson.

 Five on Black owner eyes new Bozeman restaurant as economy shows promise

Five on Black owner eyes new Bozeman restaurant

A newly released jobs report shows enough job growth in the United States to help bring the unemployment rate down to 5.4 percent, the lowest it's been since May, 2008.

Authorities serve warrants during offender compliance check

State and local law enforcement officers recently did a sweeping compliance check on sexual and violent offenders in Missoula County. Officers wanted to make sure offenders are correctly registered on the statewide registry.

Missoula police prepare for Cinco de Mayo patrols

Missoula police are expecting a busy Cinco de Mayo holiday, so they're boosting patrols with help from a state grant. Missoula police officers were able to secure an MDT STEP (Selective Traffic Enforcement Program) grant to put two DUI patrols out on the streets on the evening of May 5.

FWP busy with bear sightings in Missoula Valley

FWP busy with bear sightings in Missoula Valley

Wildlife managers had their hands full in the Missoula Valley on Sunday with at least five phone calls related to bear sightings. One of the calls, at around 2:00 pm, centered around an apparent juvenile black bear found in a backyard within a residential Kelley Island neighborhood west of Downtown Missoula.

Missoula officials await release of Krakauer book

Missoula officials await release of Krakauer book

Tuesday will mark the release of bestselling author Jon Krakuer's book "Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town." The release chronicles responses to reports of sexual assaults in Missoula.

Missoula officials consider switching Front and Main streets to two-way

Missoula considers changing Front, Main streets to two-way

Missoula city officials are inviting the public to attend a presentation Tuesday evening on a study about converting certain one-way streets in downtown Missoula to two-way.

Annual Run for the Trees race held in Missoula

Annual Run for the Trees race held in Missoula

Sunday's chilly weather didn't stop runners from heading out to Missoula's Silver Park to compete in the annual "Run for the Trees" series of races. Run Wild Missoula teamed up with Missoula Parks and Recreation for the event. Participants had the option to provide a donation to Trees for Missoula, an advocacy group that aims to plant more trees in Missoula and preserve existing ones.

Civil war exhibit put on display at Missoula museum

Civil war exhibit put on display at Missoula museum

Organizers with the Rocky Mountain Museum of Military History have put on display a special exhibit commemorating the end of the American Civil War. In addition to the regularly-seen 1863 ordinance gun, museum attendees can take a look at a host of reproduction items that emulate objects from the era, such as a replication rife, uniforms, tableware, playing cards and a lantern.

Head Start reopens, meth found at another Arlee building

Head Start reopens, meth found at another Arlee building

Staff at the Head Start building in Arlee were able to open their doors to children, after meth decontamination work was completed. Officials ordered the cleanup after an unused glass pipe had been found in the building in January. The cleanup totaled more than $50,000.

Mercantile building buyers come to Missoula to start planning phase

Mercantile sale terminated over presence of asbestos

The termination of the Missoula Mercantile building sale last month came down to the presence of asbestos.

BBQ restaurant open for business in Missoula

BBQ restaurant open for business in Missoula

Workers at the Notorious P.I.G. BBQ opened the doors at the new restaurant on Friday, giving BBQ fans a new place to grab a bite to eat in Missoula. The restaurant opened at 247 West Front Street, in a building that formerly housed the Riverside Cafe. The location is open Tuesday through Sunday.

Easter egg hunt held in Downtown Missoula

Easter egg hunt held in Downtown Missoula

On Sunday, the First Baptist Church in Downtown Missoula held their annual Easter egg hunt. The yearly tradition has been occurring for at least ten years, and this year church organizers prepared for at least 100 kids, and put out at least 2,500 candy-filled eggs.

Man apprehended after allegedly brandishing gun near Lolo

A Montana man was arrested Saturday night after allegedly brandishing a pistol and threatening a family in an apparent road rage incident near Lolo. According to Missoula Sheriff's deputies, 40-year old Brian Parini was apprehended and charged with assault with a weapon.

Missoula rugby tournament to be held in suicide victim's honor

Missoula rugby tournament to be held in suicide victim's honor

Teenage rugby players from high schools around the Missoula area are getting ready to face off in the second annual Riekena Memorial Rugby 7's Tournament, an event being held in honor of Jack Riekena, a Big Sky Sophomore who committed suicide in December 2012.

Firefighters urge caution to those contemplating controlled burns

Firefighters urge caution with controlled burns

The chance for increased wind speeds Tuesday in the Missoula area has firefighters on alert, and urging folks to take proactive steps if they are deciding whether to do controlled burns.

Bill to fund Butte veterans' home remains tabled

A bill to fund a new veterans home in Butte remained tabled after an attempt to bring the proposal back up for debate failed to get a necessary two-thirds majority. House Bill 493 had been tabled in an appropriations committee on March 26, and on March 28 legislators tried to bring the bill back into play.

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Alberton crash victim in stable condition

A 19-year-old recovering from a serious wreck in Alberton has been transferred out the critical care unit at St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula, and has begun physical therapy.

Alberton crash victim showing signs of improvement

A Missoula County man, discovered by a Good Samaritan after spending a night alone and severely injured in Alberton, is showing signs of improvement at a Missoula hospital.

Murder charge dropped against Lincoln County man

29 year-old Lolo man in critical condition after Saturday wreck

Montana Highway Patrol Troopers tell NBC Montana a 29-year old Lolo man was hospitalized following a rollover wreck on Highway 93 near Lolo at around 9:00 pm Saturday night.

Mercantile building buyers come to Missoula to start planning phase

Missoula Mercantile sale falls through

Jed Dennison, owner of Zillastate Realty, confirmed for NBC Montana that the sale of the historic Missoula Mercantile building has fallen through. According to Dennison, the prospective buyers got to the end of a due diligence period and chose to terminate the transaction.

University of Montana opens restaurant at golf course

University of Montana opens restaurant at golf course

UM Dining and the University of Montana Golf Course have teamed up to bring new dining options to South Missoula. On Monday, the Iron Griz will open its doors.

Imagine Nation Brewing opens in Missoula

Imagine Nation Brewing opens in Missoula

It’s been a process the brewery’s founders say has been six years in the making, but Imagine Nation Brewing finally opened just outside of downtown Missoula on Saturday.

SEARS MISSOULA

Sears store in Missoula to close in June

The Sears store and Sears Auto Center at the Southgate Mall in Missoula will close to the public in mid-June.

Medicaid expansion bill voted down

On Friday, the Republican-led House Human Services Committee voted down Governor Steve Bullock's proposed Medicaid expansion bill. HB-249, sponsored by Rep. Pat Noonan (D-Ramsay), would have expanded Medicaid to roughly 70,000 low-income Montanans.

Crews knock down grass fire in Missoula neighborhood

Fire crews responded to a grass fire Sunday afternoon in a residential neighborhood  west of Downtown Missoula.

Neptune Aviation announces flights between Missoula and Billings

Neptune Aviation announces Missoula-Billings flights

Missoula-based Neptune Aviation has announced that it is beginning a flight service between Missoula and Billings this summer. The flights are slated to begin in August.

UM construction sign hacked, displayed drug message

UM construction sign hacked, displayed drug message

On Monday an electronic traffic sign in a construction zone at the University of Montana's Adams Center displayed an unusual message: "Smoke Weed Every Day."

Bill could allow Montana to tax e-cigarettes

Bill could allow Montana to tax e-cigarettes

A bill making its way through the state legislature could allow Montana to impose a tax on electronic cigarettes and other vapor products.

Montana gas prices continue climb

Montana gas prices continue climb

After reaching near 10-year lows, gas prices in Montana and across the country continue to rise. The national average jumped about 12 cents to roughly $2.42 a gallon in the last week according to gasbuddy.com. In Montana, the average price for a gallon rose roughly 9 cents to about $2.09 a gallon.

Patrick Weasel Head selected to replace Copple in Missoula City Council

Patrick Weasel Head selected to replace Copple in Missoula City Council

After several rounds of votes Monday night, Missoula City Council selected retired UM Administrator Patrick Weasel Head to replace outgoing councilmember Caitlin Copple for the Ward 4 Seat. Copple previously announced her plans to resign due to her time commitments at her fulltime consulting job.

Montana bill could allow Uber operate in Montana

Montana bill could allow Uber operate in Montana

Montana Representative Ellie Hill (D-Missoula) has introduced a bill that would de-regulate the Montana taxi industry and allow for the operation of online ride-booking services like Uber. Uber is a fast-growing company that runs a cell phone app, which allows people to become “Uber X” drivers. That means drivers can set their own hours and use their own personal cars to give people rides, with Uber taking a percentage of the money made through transactions.

Mild weather brings boost in shoppers in Downtown Missoula

Mild weather boosts shopper numbers in downtown Missoula

With the recent mild weather in the Missoula area showing no signs of letting up, many residents have been able to walk around downtown Missoula at a time when they would normally stay indoors. 

Montana bill would clarify tree wells as inherent skiing danger

A bill has cleared the Montana House and Senate that would clarify in Montana state code that tree wells are an inherent danger associated with skiing. Experts agree that skiers who fall into tree wells, the hallow areas that can form around a tree’s base, have low chances of surviving, especially if the fall occurs in a head-first situation.

MISSOULAJAIL

ACLU releases report on 'woeful conditions' in Montana jails

Montana's ACLU branch has released a 70-page report detailing problems like overcrowding and unsafe conditions in many detention centers across Montana. It includes reports of inadequate staffing and insufficient medical care.

Missoula Food Bank eyes new possible location

Missoula Food Bank officials have zeroed in on a plot of land outside of Downtown Missoula that they say could be the new home for their nonprofit. Staff members say the need for the bank’s services have outgrown the current location.

Billings legislator proposes bill to boost contract hires for Montanans

Montana Senator Robyn Driscoll (D-Billings) has introduced a bill that aims to increase the amount of Montana residents brought on for public construction projects. Current rules require crews on state construction projects to be composed of at least 50 percent Montana residents.

gas prices

Gas prices could soon bottom out

Crude oil prices closed on Tuesday at just over $53 a barrel, which is the highest level in nearly a month. The increase has some wondering if prices at the pump are about to go back up.

schoolbuses

MCPS surveys voters about potential bond amounts

Missoula County Public Schools recently commissioned a research firm to conduct a survey as a way to gauge public support over what’s called the Smart School 2020 bond package. It’s a pair of potential bonds aimed at technology and safety improvements.

Missoula Council unanimously passes restructure of Splash Montana fees

Missoula Council unanimously passes restructure of Splash Montana fees

At Monday night’s city council meeting, Missoula council members approved Missoula Parks and Recreation officials’ plans to restructure the fees at the Splash Montana water park, and passed the changes as part of a larger annual fee plan package.

Hockey teammates hold moment of silence for UM student

Hockey teammates hold moment of silence for UM student

On Sunday evening, members of the University of Montana Club Hockey team, the UM Grizzlies, held a moment of silence for teammate Jake Kallen, a 19-year-old University of Montana student identified as the victim of an accident on I-90 Friday.

Montanans react to proposed statewide talking-while-driving cell phone ban

Montanans react to proposed statewide cell phone ban

State Rep. Virginia Court (D-Billings) is drafting a bill that would ban talking and texting on cell phones while driving unless hands-free devices are used.

UM Researchers forecast slower growth in Montana, but with more balanced distribution

UM Researchers forecast slower growth in Montana, but with more balance

Economic researchers with the University of Montana are predicting a slowing of growth in Montana, but with trends that would balance out growth rates throughout the state.

Sandwich signs allowed to stay in Downtown Missoula

Sandwich signs allowed to stay in Downtown Missoula

After a one-year trial period, Missoula City Council gave business owners in downtown Missoula the go-ahead to advertise their businesses with sidewalk sandwich signs up to three blocks from their establishments on a long-term basis.

Teams from around US, Canada face off in Seeley Lake Pond Hockey Tournament

U.S., Canadian teams face off in pond hockey tournament

Sunday marked the end of the 5th Annual Seeley Lake Pond Hockey Tournament in Seeley Lake, roughly 60 miles northeast of Missoula. Organizers of the USA Hockey sanctioned tournament donate proceeds from the event to the Missoula Area Youth Hockey Association and Seeley Lake Elementary.

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Winter weather increases need for sidewalk shoveling, de-icing

The return of winter weather in western Montana has property owners, businesses staff members and residents busy clearing sidewalks of ice and snow.

Attorney representing family of man killed by Missoula Police speaks out

An attorney representing the mother and fiancé of a man killed by Missoula Police last week is speaking out against an initial report that claims the shooting was justified.

Emergency responses renew discussion of snowmobile safety precautions

Emergency responses renew discussion of snowmobile safety precautions

With a recent increase in snowmobile-related emergency responses in Western Montana, there’s a renewed focus on safety. NBC Montana visited with a snowmobile safety instructor in Seeley Lake on Sunday, to discuss safety precautions that people can take.

Missoula kids surprised with adopted animals

Missoula kids surprised with adopted animals

Roughly 15 volunteers with the Humane Society of Western Montana donned Santa and elf hats as they drove around town delivering adopted animals on Christmas morning. It was all part of the Missoula shelter’s first-ever “Secret Santa Adoptions” program.

METH

Montana bill seeks to curb meth manufacture with medicine database

A recently introduced anti-drug senate bill in Montana will soon make its way through the Montana state legislature. The bill seeks to curb meth manufacturing. The Department of Justice is supporting the bill, which would create a data base to let law enforcement know when someone is attempting to buy too much of certain types of cold medicine used in the meth making process.

Providence Montana Health Foundation hires new executive director

Providence Montana Health Foundation hires new executive director

Officials with Providence Montana Health Foundation have announced their selection of Fran Albrecht as the new executive director.

Missoula school officials hopeful about 2015 bond proposal

Missoula school officials hopeful about 2015 bond proposal

Missoula school officials are proposing a 2015 bond that would help replace outdated tech infrastructure, though an exact dollar amount hasn’t been decided on yet. This follows a spring assessment that found the district’s old systems have a high vulnerability to computer viruses.

Missoula Police seek armed robbery suspect

Image courtesy of Missoula Police Department.

Armed robbery suspect arrested at Missoula apt.

Missoula police say a suspect in a Missoula convenience store robbery was taken into custody after a brief scuffle with officers Sunday afternoon.

Bill introduced to increase Montana’s legal dropout age

Bill introduced to increase Montana’s legal dropout age

Montana State Senator Robyn Driscoll, at the request of the Montana Office of Public Instruction, has introduced a bill (SB 14) that would increase Montana’s legal dropout age from 16 to 18.

Missoula courtroom security increased for Kaarma trial

Missoula courtroom security increased for Kaarma trial

Missoula authorities chose to beef up security at a Missoula County courtroom for duration of the Markus Karrma trial, citing an expectation for a large turnout.

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Grant Creek resident alleges driving incident with Kaarma

An allegation has surfaced from a resident of Missoula’s Grant Creek neighbhorhood, who spoke to us anonymously, through a different Grant Creek resident. The resident says the incident happened hours before Kaarma allegedly shot foreign exchange student Diren Dede after Dede allegedly entered Kaarma’s garage.

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Vigil held for exchange student

Friday evening, friends, neighbors and other community members gathered at Fort Missoula Soccer Fields to honor foreign exchange student Diren Dede.

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Big Sky teen honors exchange student with tattoo

Big Sky High School student Zack Plasmier tells NBC Montana he had a tattoo done Thursday to honor his best friend Diren Dede.

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Grant Creek neighborhood honors exchange student

Missoula’s Grant Creek neighborhood, where Markus Kaarma allegedly shot German exchange student Darin Dede after Dede allegedly entered Kaarma’s garage, is rallying together to honor Dede.

Paul Ryan

Attorney discusses Kaarma's reaction to international attention

We have new insight into how the man police say shot exchange student Diren Dede is dealing with the international attention this story has created.

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Exchange student's German soccer organization reacts to death

People who participate in Diren Dede’s soccer organization in Hamburg, Germany, are reacting to the exchange student’s death in Missoula over the weekend.

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Report: Community Medical purchase price is $74.79 million

NBC Montana is tracking new developments on the pending sale of Community Medical Center in Missoula. According to an independent report published on the Montana Attorney General’s website, the estimated sale price has been knocked up to $74.79 million.

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Snowfall creates dicey road conditions in Western Montana

Western Montana’s recent snowfall has created a lot of work for emergency responders, as roads have become slick and icy. As a result, the Montana Highway Patrol had a busy weekend. From Saturday morning to 3:00 pm on Sunday, Missoula’s MHP district saw 46 crashes, Kalispell’s district saw 38 crashes, Butte’s district saw 26, and Bozeman’s district saw 37.

Early snowpack allows Discovery to open for Thanksgiving holiday

Early snowpack allows Discovery to open for Thanksgiving

Discovery Ski Area in Anaconda was able to open for the ski season on Thursday.

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Frontier will return to Missoula airport next summer

Missoula airport officials say Frontier Airlines plans to return to Missoula for direct flights to and from Denver starting on May 14, 2015.

LaunchPad

Tester tours Blackstone LaunchPad center at UM

On Friday, Sen. Jon Tester toured the Blackstone LaunchPad center at the University of Montana. The entrepreneurial center was made possible through a Blackstone Charitable Foundation $2 million grant, which has also gone toward the funding of a Montana State University branch.

community medical

AG’s office hears public input on potential CMC sale

Missoula residents packed into the Hellgate High auditorium Wednesday evening, to tell Montana’s attorney general how they feel about Community Medical Center's plan to sell its assets.

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Top Hat owner seeks approval for expansion project

The owner of the Top Hat, a downtown Missoula bar, is seeking approval from the city to create a new upper-deck dining space and bar at the existing premises.

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Residents voice mixed opinions over Hillview proposal

On Monday night Missoula residents spoke out about a proposed multi-million-dollar reconstruction project on Hillview Way, on the south side of Missoula.

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Two teenagers in critical condition after Saturday morning crash

Montana Highway Patrol Troopers tell NBC Montana that two teenage boys are in critical condition after a car wreck in Missoula Saturday morning. The incident happened at the intersection of Spurgin Road and 27th Ave.

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Large black bear caught in Rattlesnake neighborhood, relocated

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials confirm for NBC Montana that an adult black bear apparently weighing roughly 300 pounds was captured in the Woods Gulch neighborhood of the Rattlesnake late Thursday night. The bear was relocated in the Lolo National Forest southeast of Placid Lake on Friday.

Mountain Water

Missoula City Council amends ordinance, continues majority support

On Monday evening, Missoula City Council members clarified their continued support of Mayor John Engen's fight to take over Mountain Water through condemnation.

Missoula parent meets with superintendent over textbook concerns

Missoula parent meets with superintendent over textbook concerns

A Missoula parent, frustrated that his children don't have math textbooks for their elementary school classes, met with MCPS Superintendent Dr. Alex Apostle on Monday morning to discuss the issue.

BEACH 6-11-14

Beach fights 100-year sentence in new Montana Supreme Court filing

Attorneys for convicted murderer Barry Beach are challenging his 100-year prison sentence.

Montana voters to decide on election-day registration

Montana voters to decide on election-day registration

On November 4, Montana voters will decide whether to let same-day voter registrations continue. The referendum is called LR -126, and it was passed by Republican legislators last year to go on the November ballot.

Mountain Water

Missoula City Council sets meeting on Mountain Water ordinance

On Monday night, Missoula City Council members voted to set a public meeting on November 3, about potential changes to an ordinance granting Mayor John Engen authority to hire outside help in acquiring Mountain Water.

State senator considers bill for a voluntary longer school year

State senator considers bill for voluntary longer school year

State Sen. Tom Facey (D-Missoula) is considering drafting a bill that would allow school officials to extend their school years if they want to. It would be an "opt-in" program, he says, so schools can decide not to participate if they don't want to, and students wouldn't have to take the extra classes.

Montana residents discuss St. Patrick's special isolation unit

Montana residents discuss St. Patrick Hospital isolation unit

Missoula residents are reacting to the potential that Missoula may eventually see an Ebola patient be treated at a nearby hospital.

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Americans could see lower heating bills this winter

U.S. residents could see lower heating bills this winter season compared to last year. According to the Energy Department's annual prediction, milder temperatures could cut heating bills.

Temperatures are forecast to be warmer than last winter. That means less demand for heat which, in turn, means a lower bill for residents, assuming the weather cooperates.

Hellgate Urban Renewal District takes effect in Missoula

Hellgate Urban Renewal District takes effect

This week marks the beginning of a brand new urban renewal district in Missoula that could lead to development along Missoula's East Broadway corridor. The district means tax dollars could go toward things like road improvements and sewer lines in the area.

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Community colleges to receive major health care education grant

Vice President Joe Biden announced Monday that nearly half a billion dollars in federal grant money would be distributed to community colleges around the country with the goal of boosting interaction between employers and students in the job training process.

Girl reports kidnapping attempt, dog startles suspect

Girl reports kidnapping attempt, dog startles suspect

Missoula sheriff's deputies say a girl reported a man attempted to kidnap her on Saturday at Two Rivers Trailer Court on Lolo.

Mountain Water

A look at Algonquin Power, the Canadian company attempting to purchase Mountain Water

On Friday, an Ontario based company, Algonquin Power and Utilities Corp, announced plans to purchase Park Water, which operates Mountain Water in Missoula. The Carlyle Group is the current owner, and this news comes amidst a condemnation court battle, in which Missoula is trying to force Carlyle to sell Mountain Water. Missoula Mayor John Engen has argued that Missoula's water infrastructure would best be managed by the city, though courts have yet to decide on that matter.

caseyallen

Group accuses Ravalli Co. deputy attorney of acting unconstitutionally

A group known as the Montana Reproductive Rights Coalition sent out a press release on Monday arguing that Ravalli County Deputy Attorney Thorin Geist acted unconstitutionally when he charged 21-year-old Casey Allen in August with criminal endangerment for putting her fetus at risk after she tested positive for illegal drugs the day before.

Specialists help boost Native American graduation rates at MCPS

Specialists help boost Native American graduation rates at MCPS

In October, new numbers will be released detailing graduation rates around the state. When it comes to Native American student graduation rates, Missoula County Public Schools officials hope the new numbers will continue their positive trend.

Mountain Water

Missoula's Mountain Water legal costs rack up faster than expected

Missoula city officials say expenses involved with the city's condemnation battle over Mountain Water have racked up faster than initial estimates projected, but say that the money has been well spent.

adamscentercontruction

UM prepares for potential game-day parking congestion

As workers continue to prepare for the Griz home game Saturday against Central Washington University, they are keeping a close eye on the parking situation.

Fox Club Shooting

Man dies after shooting at Missoula strip club

One man is dead after a shooting outside a Missoula club.

Man dies after fatal Norris Road crash

Man arrested after alleged sexual assault on Missoula officer

Missoula Police officers tell NBC Montana a 23-year-old man was arrested Saturday morning after he allegedly sexually assaulted a female police officer early Saturday.

Authorities continue search for missing Stevensville man

Authorities continue search for missing Stevensville man

Authorities are continuing their search for a missing Stevensville man, and are calling in search dog teams to assist in the effort. Ravalli County Sheriff Chris Hoffman says George Alex Baumann reportedly left his home at around 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday.

McDermott

Political complaint filed against Missoula sheriff-elect

On Friday Missoula County Undersheriff Josh Clark filed a complaint with Montana's commissioner of political practices alleging that his opponent in the race for Missoula County sheriff, TJ McDermott, violated campaign laws by receiving campaign help from a Missoula law firm without disclosing it.
Montana campaign law states that candidates cannot coordinate with corporations in campaign efforts.

Search continues for missing infant and mom on meth

Surveillance photos show mother leaving hospital with baby

NBC Montana has obtained surveillance photos showing a woman leaving an Anaconda hospital in June after she and her baby tested positive for methamphetamine.

Butte residents weigh in as Curtis begins campaign

Opinions mixed on Curtis' campaign chances

As Democratic Senate candidate Amanda Curtis begins her campaign efforts, opinions remain mixed on her chances to win a seat in the U.S. Senate.

Robin Williams in hat, closeup

Robin Williams' Parkinson's diagnosis sparks discussion

On Thursday, Robin Williams' widow revealed that the late comedian had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease shortly before he took his life earlier this week.

In a statement, Susan Schneider said that, "Robin's sobriety was intact and he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety, as well as early stages of Parkinson's disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly."

With that revelation, new discussions have emerged about the impacts of Parkinson's disease.

NBC Montana contacted the president of a Montana Parkinson's outreach group to get his thoughts on the situation and the greater discussion.

Dr. Dennis O'Donnell heads Montana's Summit for Parkinson's, and deals with the condition himself on a daily basis.

"I think Robin Williams was essentially a national treasure and I was extremely upset; it upsets me now," said O'Donnell, of Williams' passing.

"It generates a conversation about two things. One is suicide, one is Parkinson's," said O'Donnell.

O'Donnell says he felt for Williams when he heard of the Parkinson's diagnosis.

"Parkinson's is a degenerative disease, which ultimately can affect your speech, cognitive capacities, etcetera, and it may have been, in his case, that it all added up to very much -- too much," said O'Donnell.

O'Donnell was diagnosed in 2000, and the disease first appeared as a tremor in one of his hands that eventually progressed.

"It can start so subtly, but has devastating impacts in the long run," said O'Donnell.

Parkinson's is a motor system disorder that experts say runs a course of five stages, ranging from mild tremors at stage one, to stage five in which a patient may not be able to stand at all. Some medication for the disease can create uncontrollable movements in patients.

Experts estimate one in 100 people live with the disease, which means roughly 10,000 could be dealing with the disease in Montana.

O'Donnell says non-patients can help out by staying aware of the disease, and not acting nervous around patients exhibiting symptoms like uncontrolled movements.

"For almost every one of us, there's going to be some time in our lives where we need some assistance and some help," said O'Donnell.

Summit for Parkinson's is planning to hold a workshop about the disease on November 7 and 8. Anyone looking for more information can check the group's website for updates at summitforparkinsons.org.

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Health Dept. finds violations, unrefrigerated food at fair

Earlier this week, health officials with the Missoula City-County Health Department told three Western Montana Fair food vendors to dump out hundreds of pounds of various food items after they weren't properly refrigerated. 

Montana Democratic Party holds platform convention

Montana Dems have 13 days to nominate new Senate candidate

Just hours after U.S. Sen. John Walsh announced he was dropping out of the race for re-election, the Montana Democratic Party held a conference call where leaders outlined their plan for nominating a new candidate.

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Report paints picture of how millennials spend their cash

A report from Level Money, a company that makes a finance-tracking application for mobile phones, gives a glimpse at what millennials spend their money on when it comes to vices like coffee, beer and fast food.

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UV index high as Montanans try to keep cool

According to the EPA, the UV Index forecast for the Missoula area was at a 9 out of 10 Monday. That number is hovering right around the point where UV alerts are issued.

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Veterans speak out on Walsh's PTSD statements

Veterans around Montana have mixed reactions to Sen. John Walsh's previous statement that PTSD may have been a potential factor in a situation some call plagiarism.

Witness recounts encounter with potentially suspicious Missoula fires

Witness describes seeing potentially suspicious Missoula fires

Authorities in the Missoula area are investigating a series of three potentially suspicious fires that popped up over the weekend.

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Background checks now mandatory for Montana school bus drivers

Montana school bus drivers are now required by law to undergo criminal background checks, due to a recent state Board of Public Education rule change. The Board passed the new rule on Thursday, on the heels of an audit that revealed 64 of Montana's roughly 1,500 drivers had a criminal history during the 2011-2012 school year.

Alleged bridge jumper appears in court

Suspect appears in court after bridge jumping incident

A man charged with misdemeanor negligent endangerment for allegedly jumping off the Bandmann Bridge in East Missoula and landing on a person appeared in Missoula Justice Court on Monday.

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FWP: Hunting forecast a mixed bag

Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks staff have released their annual big-game hunting outlook. Here some key points in the data.

Water takeover could include rights to remote lakes

If the City of Missoula is victorious in its current condemnation battle for control of Mountain Water, it could end up with the water rights to eight remote lakes in the Rattlesnake Wilderness.

The city recently filed a complaint to condemn Mountain Water, and a resulting court battle is currently playing out with a trial set to begin in March.

Supporters say Missoula should own the infrastructure tied to its water supply. The Carlyle Group, which owns the company, hasn't accepted Missoula's offers to buy.

As that battle wages, NBC Montana is taking a closer look at the assets controlled by Mountain Water.

The company holds water rights to eight remote lakes in the Rattlesnake Wilderness, northeast of Missoula.

NBC Montana met with Mountain Water President John Kappes to learn about the lakes and the dams that allow them to provide a service as a backup water source.

"They're very remote, you can no longer drive to them but Mountain Water, if we have to, we can get mechanized equipment into the lakes," said Kappes.

Kappes says maintenance costs roughly $50,000 a year, out of the company's roughly $18 million in yearly revenue. About $27,000 of that goes to Conservation Corps crews, and there's also the need for helicopter rentals, if crews decide not to hike the roughly 12 miles in. A smaller chopper runs about $1,000 an hour, while a larger one with capabilities of carrying machinery can cost about $1,500.

Mountain Water is able to use mechanized equipment in the wilderness area to maintain the dams due to a special exemption.

"It really is the only use of mechanized equipment throughout the nation in the wilderness," said Kappes.

The dams were built in the early 1900s, and are earthen, with a mix of rocks and woods.

Crews help maintain trails, take vegetation off the tops of dams, and do regular checkups.

"[We] check the lakes, make sure that the ice isn't jamming and having water flow over the top," said Kappes.

Kappes says the dams may not need significant work in the future, because it's really only valves and pipes that need to be replaced as they wear out.

Meanwhile, the battle over Mountain Water's assets continues to play out in court, with the rights to the Rattlesnake lakes just a segment of Mountain Water's properties.

Young girl apparently fine after Splash Montana rescue

Staff at Missoula's Splash Montana say a young girl appeared to be fine after being revived at the water park.

Delsig Nore

Attorney explains Montana’s parole law

Residents are voicing concerns over parole for a western Montana man long before his sentence was up. Many are questioning how David Delsignore could be paroled less than 4 years into a 15-year prison sentence.

Corey Allen Hewitt

Jury finds bridge jumper guilty of negligent endangerment

Missoula jurors found a 21-year-old man guilty of misdemeanor negligent endangerment, after he jumped off a bridge in the East Missoula area and landed on a man last summer. The incident happened on the Clark Fork River.

Three Missoula-area vets begin Honor Flight journey

Three Missoula-area vets begin Honor Flight journey

 On Saturday three Missoula-area World War 2 veterans began their journey to Washington DC for an Honor Flight. The three veterans, Marty Henher, Jerry Schliebe and Bob Rheinschmidt, left Missoula Saturday for a hotel in Billings. They’ll spend the night, and the next day they’ll board a flight to Washington D.C.

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Montana securities commissioner warns of Bitcoin risks

On Thursday Montana Securities Commissioner Monica Lindeen put out an investor advisory urging Motnanans to consider the risks that come with virtual currencies like Bitcoin before jumping in.

Bitcoin is a digital currency created in 2009. It’s popular among techies, investors, libertarians and other people who want to exchange money without involving banks or governments. Some have made a lot of money by buying Bitcoin at low rates and cashing in when the values skyrocket.

Lindeen’s advisory cautions that virtual currency is subject to minimal regulation, susceptible to cyber attacks, and not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Lindeen also says investors in virtual currency will have to rely on unregulated companies that may not have the right internal controls, and also that investors will have to use security software and other systems to guard e-Wallets from theft.

“We do know that Bitcoin is becoming more popular, and frankly we kind of want to get out in front of it and give people the information at the front end before they get into the virtual currency investing,” said Jennifer McKee, spokeswoman for Lindeen.

On Thursday NBC Montana met with a Missoula man who nearly made half a million dollars through Bitcoin, but didn’t end up taking the step to invest.

“When I first looked at the Bitcoin it was running at about $8 a Bitcoin, and I slowly watched it bump up to about $20 a Bitcoin, and I thought about investing right there,” said Gibbs.  

Ultimately, the Bitcoin value became too high when accounting for the risks. Gibbs hasn’t completely lost faith in the currency though. He says if it hits $100 again he may invest in a couple Bitcoins, but he’ll watch them closely.

“The Bitcoin has gone up and crashed twice now, and we're looking at the third run, and so it's either going to peak or disappear,” said Gibbs.

Missoula Rural Fire levy increase set to pass

Missoula Rural Fire levy increase set to pass

By early Wednesday morning, Missoula Rural Fire’s request for a levy increase was set to pass. Though there were ballots still to be counted, the levy led with 4,600 Yes votes to 2,128 No votes, as of 12:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Missoula bus officials eye possible zero-fare system

Missoula bus officials eye possible zero-fare system

Officials with Missoula's main bus system, Mountain Line, are looking at how to create a zero-fare bus system. The Mountain Line bus system runs throughout most of the city. Right now, a one-way ticket costs a dollar.

Scooter collision sends two to hospital in Missoula

Missoula scooter collision sends two to hospital

Missoula police tell NBC Montana two riders on a scooter were transported to a hospital after a collision at around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, at the intersection of South Ave and Brooks. 

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Montanans for Climate Solutions rallies held across state

Montanans calling for decreased carbon emissions and other environmental changes gathered at rallies in thirteen cities around Montana on Saturday, to call on public officials and businesses to respond to what they call the “climate crisis.”

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Worker’s Memorial Day event held in Missoula

The sister of a Missoula man killed in an explosion at an auto body shop in Missoula late last year organized a Missoula Memorial Day event held on Saturday. Laura Hall’s brother, Bruce Hall, died after pouring lacquer from a barrel into a smaller container. Investigators say the fumes exploded, partly because of inadequate ventilation.

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High school chefs go head-to-head in culinary competition

Aspiring chefs from three Missoula high schools went to head-to-head in the first annual MCPS and UM Cooking Competition on Saturday. The event was held at the University of Montana’s University Center. Students from culinary programs at Hellgate, Sentential and Big Sky highschools were given roughly two hours to prepare an entrée, and organizers encouraged the kids to use local ingredients in their cooking.

Montana Catholic Schools superintendent announces resignation

Montana Catholic Schools Supeindendent Pat Haggarty has announced that he’s leaving his post for a new job after his replacement is hired. Haggarty did not tell Associated Press reporters the details of the new job, but he did say it’s a great opportunity.

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Mayor proposes budget that would increase taxes 3.92%

Missoula Mayor John Engen has released a budget proposal for fiscal year 2015 that would increase taxes 3.92 percent.

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Firearm suppressor sales soar nationwide

Sales of firearm suppressors skyrocketed nationwide last year -- a trend that some analysts say can be traced to gun control talks in 2013, following the 2012 elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

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Man plans trip to Ukraine to visit family, see unrest firsthand

On Tuesday, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden promised support for Ukraine and said the U.S. won’t recognize Russia’s recent annexation of Crimea, adding, “We will never recognize Russia’s illegal occupation of Crimea.” He also told Russia to “Stop supporting men hiding behind masks and unmarked uniforms sowing unrest in eastern Ukraine.”

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Roughly a thousand volunteers turn out for Clark Fork cleanup

Volunteers estimate they pulled roughly five tons of trash from the Clark Fork River in Missoula on Saturday. It was all part of the Clark Fork Coalition's annual river cleanup event

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Students to see new SAT tests in 2016

In 2016, high school students will experience an overhauled SAT test, with new types of questions and some major changes.
 
The SAT is a college entrance exam that 1.7 million students took last year.
 
One new direction is the use of vocabulary more tuned into real world applications, with words you might see in the workplace. For instance, instead of “punctilious,” you may see “synthesis” instead.
 
There will be no extra penalty for wrong answers, and there’s going to be a computer version of the test available to take.
 
The math section will be narrowed down, and the College Board says the problems will “Matter most for college and career readiness and success.”
 
Another big change is the essay question. It will be optional, and if the student does it, rather than offering their opinion on a topic, they’ll read a passage and analyze the argument.
 
There are also going to be questions about founding documents, like the Declaration of Independence.
 
NBC Montana visited Hellgate High School in Missoula on Friday to gather student reactions.
 
“I think it could be a good thing and a bad thing. [Without the essay question], it's going to be a shorter test, so it will be good,” said Hellgate senior Preston Appelhans.
 
“I think it's a really, really good thing, because it puts a lot of stress on everyone and it will be just be a little bit more relaxed,” said Hellgate senior Shea Lachman.
 
“I think it's going to be pretty good. I'm disappointed that I won’t be able to take it, because that will be after I'm a senior,” said Hellgate sophomore Sarah Sanz.
 
“I think it's a good thing. It kind of advances into the modern world,” said Hellgate sophomore Drae Howell.
 
The test was last changed in 2005. Back then, the essay was added to the test and analogy questions were taken off.

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Lowell School Health Center holds open house

The Lowell School Health Center in Missoula held an open house on Friday to give tours of the facility and spread the word about its services.

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Missoula parking officials detail possible meter overhaul

The Missoula Parking Commission hosted a round of public meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday to collect opinions on a proposed overhaul of the city’s parking meter system.

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Olympian Sam Schultz speaks at Missoula event

Montana mountain biking Olympian Sam Schultz spoke during a multimedia presentation at a charity event in Missoula Tuesday. The event raised money for Youth Homes InnerRoads Wilderness Program.

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Lolo Creek Complex leaves danger of flooding

On Tuesday, the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office and officials from the Missoula Rural Fire District went door to door along Highway 12, visiting with residents to alert them to the flood danger created by the Lolo Creek Complex fire of 2014. Experts say steep, charred landscapes may not be able to handle intense bursts of rain and runoff.

Contamination causes difficulties in Missoula-area recycling efforts

Staff at a Missoula-area recycling facility want folks to take steps to ensure their recyclable materials are properly processed, rather than ending up in a land fill.

Crews perform river rescue in Victor area

Ravalli County Sheriff Chris Hoffman tells NBC Montana that crews rescued two rafters off the Bitterroot River on Saturday, in the victor area. We're told the rafters are uninjured. Details are limited at this time, but Hoffman tells us the incident occurred between the area of Tucker Crossing and Victor Crossing.

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Report on Ravalli Treasurer’s office creates mixed reaction in community

We're continuing to gather new reaction on retired judge Nels Swandal's report released Thursday, which stated that Swandal found no evidence of criminal wrongdoing in the Ravalli County Treasurer’s Office. Stamey had made allegations of corruption against multiple county officials and workers.

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Missoula-area runners prepare for Boston Marathon

It's been nearly a year since the Boston Marathon bombings. On Friday, NBC Montana talked to Missoula-area runners who plan to run the course in just 9 days, and many tell NBC Montana that last year’s tragedy is actually one of the things that motivates them to make the trek to Boston.

RAVALLI COUNTY COURTHOUSE

Judge: No evidence of criminal conduct in Ravalli Co. Treasurer's Office

An independent judge investigating claims of criminal wrongdoing in the Ravalli County Treasurer’s office has issued his final report.

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Traffic swells as prep begins for 3rd St project in MIssoula

Crews have begun moving power and gas lines for Northwestern Energy on Third Street in Missoula to make room for a major overhaul project slated to begin soon.

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NTSB begins investigation into Missoula helicopter crash

NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) officials have confirmed for NBC Montana that the NTSB has started an investigation into Friday’s helicopter crash at Missoula International Airport. NTSB officials say they are working with the FAA on the investigation, and the cause of the crash is undetermined at this point.

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Stolen explosives still under investigation in Ravalli County

ATF officials and the Ravalli County Sheriff’s Office continue to ask the public for help in locating recently stolen explosives. Investigators say the stolen materials include roughly 285 pounds of high explosives in the form of ANFO (Ammonium nitrate fuel oil), explosive boosters and dynamite.

WILLIAM RILEY BALDWIN

Officers say wanted DeBorgia man died of apparent suicide

According to a press release from the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office in Idaho, a DeBorgia man who authorities previously said was a person of interest in an alleged rape died of an apparent suicide.

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Montana emergency officials urge folks to stay prepared for floods

The Montana Department of Emergency Services issued a press release Saturday reminding Montanans that the state is experiencing changing spring weather conditions that may cause rivers, creeks and streams to rise rapidly. The Great Falls-based National Weather Service branch is predicting a warming trend to occur during the next several days, and continuing into next week. Above-average snowpack conditions may boost the likelihood of flooding.

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Missoula Animal Control dog kennels at full capacity

Missoula Animal Control officials say their dog kennels are at full capacity, and they’re calling on the public for help. There are about 30 kennels for dogs at their shelter, and every single one is taken up.

VICKIE ZEIER

Zeier new chief administrative officer for Missoula Co.

Vickie Zeier is the new Chief Administrative Officer for Missoula County. Missoula County Commissioners voted to appoint Zeier during a meeting Thursday.

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Academy Day in Missoula mixes military officials with military hopefuls

Recruiters for the United State’s top military academies met with young military hopefuls from around Western Montana Saturday, as part of the “Academy Day” hosted at the Missoula Armed Forces Reserve Center.

Community Medical Center to be bought out

Steve Carlson, CEO of Community Medical Center, confirms Community Medical Center is being bought out by Billings Clinic and a Tennessee-based hospital group.

Jordan Linn Graham

Graham's defense, Johnson's family react to sentencing

Jordan Graham's defense came out of the courthouse to a waiting crowd of media after Thursday’s sentencing, where Graham received a sentence of more than 30 years in federal prison. 

Missoula library officials okay appraisal of current building

Missoula library officials OK appraisal of current building

At a board meeting Wednesday, the Missoula Public Library Board voted to OK an appraisal of the library’s current facility. The process would let them know how much they could possibly get if they decide to sell the building in their efforts to move to a new location and expand.

(img1)Fire-scorched earth leaves threat of mudslides

Fire-scorched earth leaves threat of mudslides

Fire-scarred landscapes here in Montana carry a risk of mudslides. It’s something staffers with the National Weather Service are keeping a close eye on, as they monitor conditions and weigh whether to issue advisories and warnings.

Murder charge dropped against Lincoln County man

Livingston woman dead after rollover near Three Forks

MHP dispatchers say a 35-year old Livingston woman is dead following a one vehicle rollover on US 287 near Three Forks. Dispatchers say it appears the woman was wearing her seatbelt, but that she may have been wearing it improperly. Dispatchers say it is unknown if alcohol is a factor, and speed was not a factor.

Missoula Rural Firefighters get hands-on practice during controlled house burn

Missoula Rural Firefighters get hands-on practice during controlled house burn

The Missoula Rural Fire District put on a live fire training burn at a home on Kehrwald Drive on Saturday, as part of an effort to provide firefighters with a live fire training scenario. Firefighters in attendance included those from local assisting agencies.

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Thousands turn out for Great Rockies Sports Show at Adams Center

Thousands of outdoors enthusiasts turned out for the second annual Great Rockies Sport Show at the Adam’s Center in Missoula. The event is a sportsman show that also includes boat and RV exhibits.

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Community Forestry Day held at UM

The Forester’s Ball organization and the Forestry Scholarship Association teamed up to hold the first ever “Community Forestry Day” at the University of Montana. The event aimed to stir interest in nature and forestry management among youngsters, and included several interactive events.

Community Medical

Hospital officials will take public comment on possible merger

Community Medical Center officials have announced that they are soliciting feedback from the community on a potential merger through email and mail.

Bomb threat forces evacuation of Frenchtown High School

A bomb threat found Thursday morning at Frenchtown Junior High School prompted school officials to evacuate students at that school as well as Frenchtown High School. Roughly 600 students were evacuated in the incident.

Community Medical

Former staff member at CMC speaks out on possible merger

A former staff member at Missoula’s Community Medical Center is speaking out about the way hospital officials are reviewing possible merger options. NBC Montana previously reported that in a letter addressed to the community, the hospital’s board gave several reasons for pursuing a partnership with a different entity, like improved quality of care.

 Missoula Rural Fire District officials to ask voters for mill levy increase

Missoula Rural Fire officials to ask for mill levy increase

Missoula Rural Fire officials tell NBC Montana that the district’s Board of Trustees has unanimously agreed to submit a measure on a May 6 ballot that would increase the district’s mill levy by 10.04 mills. That means the district would raise roughly $440,766 a year.

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Jewell, Tester host roundtable discussion at Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Senator Jon Tester visited the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation in Missoula on Saturday to host a roundtable discussion with sportsmen and other outdoor enthusiasts.

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Missoula avalanche victim Fred Allendorf released from hospital

NBC Montana has confirmed through St. Patrick’s Hospital Staff that Missoula avalanche victim Fred Allendorf has been released from the hospital. Allendorf was hospitalized following the urban avalanche off of Van Buren Street back in late February, and his injuries had included broken ribs.

Murder charge dropped against Lincoln County man

Police say boy injured by “shriner” car at Missoula St. Pat’s parade

Missoula Police say a boy was injured at the Missoula St. Patrick’s Day Parade after there was a malfunction in a small “shriner” vehicle. Missoula Police say a mechanical problem caused the driver to loose control of his vehicle, and that the vehicle veered into the crowd and struck two people.

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Missoula pie peddlers see sales boost during 'Pi Day'

Pie peddlers around Missoula saw their sales skyrocket on Friday, as many Missoulians opted to celebrate “Pi Day.” The first three digits of the mathematical symbol “pi” are 3.14, and so naturally, March 14 is “Pi Day.”

LOLO SCHOOL

Lolo school officials weigh options after voters reject bond issue

Lolo School officials are weighing how to move forward on addressing what they say are pressing needs at the current Lolo School facility after voters rejected their latest attempt at a bond issue.

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Fundraiser held for family of Lolo-area crash victims

On Tuesday night, community members gathered to raise money for the Okon family at the Bayern Brewery in Missoula.

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Volunteers return to Rattlesnake avalanche site for cleanup efforts

A decreased avalanche danger in Missoula’s Rattlesnake Valley allowed volunteer crews to continue cleaning up the wreckage at the site of last Friday’s avalanche.

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Avalanche experts issue advisories in Western Montana

Folks out enjoying the recent sunshine in Western Montana will want to remember that the heat can create the possibility of avalanches, and experts want people to stay aware.

Murder charge dropped against Lincoln County man

Two fatal car wrecks reported in Western Montana Friday

Montana Highway Patrol troopers reported two fatal car wrecks Friday in Western Montana.

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Potholes popping up as snow melts

The melting snow around the Missoula area is revealing potholes, creating pricey problems for drivers. Crews are working as fast as they can to patch up problem areas in Missoula, in between fixing plugged storm drains and responding to reports of standing water.

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Ravalli residents react to rising waters

Northern Ravalli County is under a Flood Warning that will run indefinitely. The warning includes Florence, where a large crew of volunteers gathered at the Florence Fire Department to fill sandbags for their neighbors.

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Snowpack above average around Missoula

The average snowpack in areas around Missoula is reportedly 140 percent of the normal level.

Responders are starting to speak with each other about what that might mean when spring snowmelt season comes around. Flooding is a real possibility.

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Missoula crews work to prevent flooding

The National Weather Service has issued a flood advisory in the Missoula area, stating that poor water drainage issues will develop. Recent significant snowfall could combine with the rising temperatures and more precipitation to create back-up and ponds on roadways, yard and fields. There is also a higher flood risk for low-lying properties like basements and garages.

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Volunteers continue to dig out victims’ belongings as avalanche danger remains high

Volunteers returned to the site of an avalanche outside of downtown Missoula Saturday, to help dig out victims’ belongings.

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Missoula plow crews battle harsh conditions

Missoula crews are hard at work plowing snow throughout town, but harsh wind and snow conditions are slowing the progress. As of roughly noon Friday, sixteen pieces of equipment were out, working to clear the snow. The team was focusing on top priority roads, like Russell and Higgins. Then the crews will begin work on side streets.

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Stockman Bank buys downtown Missoula Salvation Army property

NBC Montana has confirmed that Stockman Bank, headquartered in Miles City, has bought the Salvation Army property at the intersection of Broadway and Orange in Missoula. The bank has locations around eastern Montana, and a new Missoula location is a possibility, though there are no plans at this time.

Historic mercantile needs leasers

Missoula library officials look at possible Mercantile building purchase

The Missoula Public Library board of trustees recently voted to look at possibly purchasing the Missoula Mercantile building in downtown Missoula.

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Stuck, tired residents turn to bus to get around in snow

The recent snowstorm that pummeled the Missoula area has been pushing residents to turn to the Mountain Line bus in situations where they would otherwise drive, bike or walk.

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Special Olympics events bring achievements to Missoula-area athlete

At a recent “Super Grizzly Dip” fundraiser event, Coulter Maul was crowned King, and his girlfriend Hilary Benjamin was crowned Queen. The two had raised the most money in the days leading up to the event.