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Category Archives: Page One

Forest Service hears from Travel Plan objectors

By Michael Howell Dave Schmid, who has been serving up until recently as Acting Regional Forester for the Northern Region, and Bitterroot National Forest Supervisor Julie King met with 15 of the 17 official objectors to the Bitterroot National Forest Travel Plan last week to hear about their concerns face to face. They also heard…

‘Hoot Owl’ fishing restrictions in effect

By Michael Howell Low water flows in the river combined with extremely high water temperatures for the season have led the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks to place “Hoot Owl” Fishing Restrictions on the Bitterroot River. Following three straight days of unusually high water temperatures, and dozens of dead trout found floating in…

Fires in Bitterroot out or under control, so far

By Michael Howell High temperatures and drought conditions not generally seen until August have driven the fire danger on the Bitterroot National Forest steadily upward. It’s been so hot and dry that fireworks celebrations up and down the valley were cancelled when high winds were forecast for the fourth of July. On June 29, when…

Habitat for Humanity hits zoning snag

By Michael Howell Habitat for Humanity’s plan to build four new homes in Hamilton hit a road block last week on Tuesday, June 30, when the Hamilton Zoning Board of Adjustment decided on a 5 to 1 vote to deny the requested conditional use permit that would have allowed the homes to be built on…

Uncommon project gives new life to an old space

By Jean Schurman The O’Hara House at 111 South 4th has been the home of Sam’s Spade Garden Tools and Wares for the last eight years and while proprietress Samantha O’Byrne has enjoyed and even had a passion for her role in bringing unique gifts, garden wares, birding books and advice to her customers, she…

First legal same-sex marriage performed in Stevensville

By Michael Howell Just two days prior to the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling that makes it illegal for states to ban same-sex marriages, a Stevensville couple took advantage of the ruling last November by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals that struck down Montana’s ban. Cathy Scholtens and Becky Howard have been in love…

Forest officials won’t consider county’s objection to Travel Plan

By Michael Howell Bitterroot National Forest Supervisor Julie King hand delivered a letter to the County Commissioners last week confirming that the County cannot legally object to the adoption of the Bitterroot National Forest Travel Plan because it failed to file any comments on the issue during the public comment period and thus lacks standing…

Stevi council supports bicycle camp in town park

By Michael Howell Stevensville Mayor Gene Mim Mack broke a tie vote last week to approve the location of a proposed bicycle camp at Lewis and Clark Park. Not only was the council split on the issue, public comment was also about evenly divided with 13 people commenting in favor of the location and 13…

Bear Mountain Playground seeks volunteers

Bear Mountain Playground needs volunteer s for September’s construction. The community-supported playground-building project will take place September 16-20 in Stevensville’s Lewis and Clark Park. The steering committee has been busy raising funds and awareness, but now is the time for individuals and groups to step forward and commit to helping out. “We’re not talking about…

Hamilton study commission considers governance options

By Michael Howell In the 2014 primary election, the voters for the City of Hamilton voted in favor of establishing a local study commission. Melvin Monson, Lynette Helgeland, and Robert Smaus were elected to serve on the commission in the 2014 general election. Dennis Stranger, City Planner/Special Projects Director, was appointed as the ex-officio and…