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Monthly Archives: March 2014

County considers possible merger of planning, environmental health departments

  By Michael Howell The Ravalli County Commissioners discussed the possibility of merging the Planning Department with the Department of Environmental Health last week. A scenario was presented by the Planning Department that would involve both departments sharing the same physical space and both departments sharing an administrator who would have control over the budgets…

County files suit to collect fines from Treasurer

  By Michael Howell On Monday, March 10, the Ravalli County commissioners moved unanimously to file the lawsuit aimed at collecting $29,000 in fines from County Treasurer Valerie Stamey. At a previous meeting on February 18, the commissioners identified in a two-hour long process at least 58 delinquent monthly reports and settlements, required to be…

Valley businesses share concerns with local legislators

  All six Ravalli County state legislators recently met with 10 small business owners and managers to listen to their concerns and hear their thoughts regarding economic opportunity and struggles in Ravalli County. The businesses participating included Ironhaus Manufacturing, Bitterroot Tool & Machine, R & R Conner, Lakeland Feeds & Supply, Selway Corporation, Glacier Tool…

Animals seized in alleged neglect case

  On Monday, March 10, the Ravalli County Sheriff’s Office served a search warrant west of Hamilton in support of an investigation into the alleged neglect of various domesticated animals. With the assistance of the Bitterroot Humane Society, four chickens, three ducks, 17 head of cattle, three donkeys, one horse, 21 sheep and two yaks…

Stevensville applies for grant – could produce 40 new jobs

By Michael Howell The Stevensville Town Council agreed unanimously to apply for a grant from the Department of Commerce’s Big Sky Trust Fund to help start up a new business in town that may create 40 new jobs over the next few years. The jobs will pay $14.43 per hour minimum. The business is called…

Frances Haley Cote

Stevensville  – Our earth angel took her wings on March 13 and departed on her journey to rest and find the peace she knew would await her. She was as elegant and dignified in her passing as she was in life. Her circle has been completed and so many have had the benefit of knowing…

Donald R. Thomas

Hamilton – Donald R. Thomas, 91, of Hamilton passed away after a full life on March 11, 2014. Don was born January 17, 1923 in Buffalo, New York to Llewellyn and Margaret Thomas. Don married his childhood sweetheart (Violet Valentine) after high school. In the Army during World War II, he fought in the Battle…

Proposed dam purchases good for Montana

By Bob Rowe, CEO, NorthWestern Energy   D.D. Hardy’s recent letter in the Bitterroot Star raised questions about NorthWestern Energy’s proposed purchase of the PPL Montana hydroelectric facilities. I will address some of the questions raised in the letter. PPL Montana bought the dams from the Montana Power Company in 1999 – in the aftermath…

Your vote matters more than ever

“I don’t vote. My vote doesn’t matter, so why should I bother?” There’s never been a time in our history where that statement has been so wrong. Today, your vote matters more than ever before, especially on state and local levels. We face an onslaught of what I can only describe as perversions of governance…

Starving sheep show signs of abnormalities

I noticed sheep with brachygnathia superior (underbite) in the photos of animals that were confiscated last week in the Hamilton area. Thank you to the Humane Society and kind people who are fostering the undernourished animals. Seeing the sheep with underbite reminded me to write to repeat that newborn animals with underdeveloped facial bones can…