Here are some of my thoughts/commentary about issues that recently caught my attention:
- Great Falls Public Safety Levy
- State Senator Keith Regier
- Cannabis in Montana
- Kevin McCarthy
- 2023 Banished Words List
GREAT FALLS PUBLIC SAFETY LEVY:
One of the proposals to pay for the city staff’s “wish list” was to raise our taxes by 191%. It seemed to get a lot of support from the elected officials.
But then, The Western Word and others chimed in with our disapproval. Commissioner Joe McKenney was quoted in The Electric saying that based on community feedback, the option was “out the window.”
That is a good move. The person on the city staff who came up with this cockamamie idea should look for another job.
The fight is not over. Now the city is considering raising our taxes by 65%. They will probably say they are saving us peons 126% on our taxes (191% minus 65%).
According to The Electric:
“Based on calculations the finance office provided to commissioners in November, a $12 million levy would be an estimated 65 percent increase.
That would be an estimated increase of $156.82 on a $100,000 house and an increase of $313.65 on a $200,000 house, according to the city finance office.”
One other thing to consider is, as The Electric reported:
“The proposed $12 million public safety operations does not include any potential facility bonds for infrastructure improvement, such as new fire stations, which are an estimated $10 million each.”
If this proposal gets to the ballot, I will be a strong vocal “NO” vote. Instead of ordering market-priced seafood and ribeye steak, the city should consider buying some 70-80% lean hamburger for a few years. They could always raise taxes on casinos and bars – but that might hit too close to home for some.
Read the complete report from The Electric HERE.
STATE SENATOR KEITH REGIER:
Back in April 2021, State Senator Keith Regier won The Western Word award “Dumbass of the Week” for talking about possible chips in the COVID vaccines.
Regier gets to be the first legislator of this session to embarrass Montana.
If there was a “Racist of the Week” award, some people might nominate him.
The Daily Montanan reports:
A draft joint resolution from Sen. Keith Regier, R-Kalispell, aims to push Congress to investigate “alternatives” to American Indian reservations, arguing they have “failed to positively enhance the lives and well-being of most of the Indians or the other citizens of the State of Montana.”
The part “…or the other citizens of the State of Montana” is interesting, to say the least.
We’re only a few days into the session and the MAGA-controlled Montana legislature is already setting Montana back decades. This resolution should be flushed down the toilet.
Read the resolution HERE. Read the Daily Montanan story HERE.
CANNABIS IN MONTANA:
In case you missed it, MTN News reported that the Montana Department of Revenue reported estimated figures for the first year of legal recreational marijuana sales in the state. The data shows $303,563,879 exchanged hands in combined recreational and medical marijuana transactions across the state in 2022 (source).
That equates to about $46 million in taxes for the state.
I hope the MAGA-controlled Montana Legislature does not screw this up.
Check out the MTN story HERE.
The U.S. House had three more votes yesterday for Speaker and Kevin McCarthy failed to get enough votes all three times. They will try again today.
McCarthy is 0-6 so far.
McCarthy is damaged goods. If he gets elected as Speaker, he won’t have the power or respect to accomplish anything. The GOP should pick someone else – I nominate former U.S. Representative Liz Cheney…
2023 BANISHED WORDS LIST:
A faithful reader sent this article to me as it contains some words that I hate when people use.
According to ABC 7 out of Denver:
Stop using imprecise and meaningless words! That’s the message from Lake Superior State University, which publishes a list annually of words that should be “banished.”
The ten words/phrases:
- Inflection point
- Quiet quitting
- Moving forward
- Does that make sense?
- It is what it is
Number 10 is one that I hate. After a tire salesman told me they screwed up and did not fill out the warranty paperwork for the tires I purchased a few months ago, he told me they could do nothing. Finally, after debating the issue, he said, “It is what it is.”
I said something like, “What it is – it’s that I’m getting screwed.” I won’t buy tires there anymore.
Check out the story HERE.
That bill is as transparent as can be. He and the alleged constituents whispering in his ear want to do away with the Flathead reservation and formal tribal government to get out from under the CSKT water deal. And they want to bring down the curtain on the final act of Manifest Destiny, to finally strip Native Americans of the last of their lands. IMO of course.
After reading The Electric’s reporting of Chief Newton’s GFPD needs, I’d say I’m at a 50/50 yes vote on levy. But this new proposal doesn’t include municipal court needs if there are 22 more officers.
Good point. Thanks, JmB
I think the $12 million would include more court officers. They presented a week or two ago. They wanted around $1 million.
They specified they would need more personnel to deal with all the extra citations. The GFPD is already handing out more citations per capita than any other big city in Montana. Too bad probably 0% of what thry do write is for running red lights.
I for one would like to have options on the ballot. Maybe a couple of levels for a total, or split the departments up. I agree with the need for an extra fire station and its crew, do not agree with the need for massive increase in police personnel to write even more citations to nickle and dime GF residents like they’re an ATM mchine.
OK. Thanks Terry
Another nomination for banished words: ‘actively’ (and its sibling, ‘active’). As in, “We are actively investigating all leads in the case.” As opposed to ‘passively’ investigating? Or, “She was diagnosed with active apnea.” I suppose that’s different from ‘latent’ apnea, which everyone else suffers.
Yes! Thanks, JmB