Elizabeth Doney Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
Sen. Ken “Kim” Hansen is currently working on two Senate bills that affect agriculture and fish and game, two of the senate committees that he sits on. Only two people were on hand to discuss the legislative session with Hansen during the noon teleconference Thursday at Robins School. Hansen was accompanied in Helena by Rep. John Musgrove, Dhavre, and Rep. Bob Bergren, D-Havre. The first bill Hansen addressed was Senate Bill 59, an act applying the regulations of the federal humane methods of slaughter of 1978 to the provisions of the Montana Meat and Poultry Inspection Act. This amended two sections, repealed one and provided a delayed effective date. “This bill passed the floor last Friday and is primarily a housekeeping bill,” Hansen said. “It basically brings the human slaughter methods up to date in the Montana codes.” The second bill, Senate Bill 58 will repeal the termination date regarding the destination of prairie dogs as non-game wildlife. This will allow the continued coordinated management of prairie dogs as vertebrate pests or rodents with an immediate effective date. “SB 58 drew a lot of sparks. What this bill will do is allow the department of agriculture to manage prairie dogs. A bill is already in place, but it will sunset if we continue to do nothing and allow private landowners to manage prairie dogs,” he said. It brought a lot of opposition, but I really believe that they don’t want the state government to come in. Regardless, we need some help with prairie dog management.” Hansen has also been supportive of the 24-hour opening of the Wild Horse port bill that passed on the House floor and pledges to carry when it comes to the senate side. He states support of the full time kindergarten but firmly believes the actual decision is up to the parents and the school boards. The bill is sponsored by Carol Williams and narrowly passed the Education and Cultural Committee floor with a 5-4 vote on Tuesday. On being on the Joint Appropriations Subcommittee on Natural Resources and Commerce with Rep. John Musgrove, Dhavre, the senator said: “If you can get two representatives on the same committee, we have more power. Working together on the same issues with Musgrove helped bring $12 million to the Hi-Line.” Of the bickering in the Capitol, he said: “It’s still very tense. Pretty soon it will all smooth out. We always do what’s right in The end of 90 days.” Hansen would like to encourage and request that community members get in touch with him if they are following a bill or concerned about a matter. “I can’t represent people if I can’t hear their complaints. I will do my best to listen and get something done,” he said. Hansen is chair of the Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Committee, vice chair of the Joint Appropriations Subcommittee on Natural Resources and Commerce and a member of the Finance and Claims and Fish and Game committees. Hansen can be contacted at (406) 444-4771, by e-mail at HANSEN_KENNETH@EMAIL.C OM or by mail at the Capitol by writing to Sen. Ken Hansen P.O. Box 200400, Helena, MT 59620-0400.
To view the status of Hansen’s bills go to:
http://leg.mt.gov /css/sessions/60th/leg_info.asp?H ouseID=2&SessionID=91&LAWSI D=2673.