Laurel — The Montana Public Service Commission is required to hold formal hearings on topics such as the sale of utility assets. They are formal occasions when corporate attorneys question utility executives under oath. But recently the commission has been holding informal hearings on location, where local people can come and ask questions of utility representatives. That's what they did last Friday when representatives of Devon Energy and NorthWestern Energy appeared at the Eagles Club to answer questions about the proposed sale of Devon natural gas assets on the Hi-Line. People came away better informed.
Dart — Voters keep electing Ken Blatt St. Marks to chair the Chippewa Creek tribal council, and tribal council members keep removing him. St. Marks still hasn't been sworn in from his most recent election yet, but tribal council members say they will boot St. Marks out of office as soon as he's in office. They ought to let him serve, and if voters are displeased, the can vote him out of office at the next election.
Laurel — It's not easy to increase your own taxes, but Havre voters did that this week. They overwhelmingly approved two plans to spruce up schools — Sunnyside and Havre High School. The improvements are needed, and voters stepped up the the plate and said they are willing to pay for them.
Laurel — There may be many benefits from the oil exploration going on in the Bakken formation of North Dakota and eastern Montana. But there are some problems that come with the massive oil boom. There has also been a boom in drug trafficking and prostitution. Authorities in Montana and North Dakota have taken the bull by the horns and arrested a massive number of people in connection with the sale of meth in the area. Residents of the Bakken area will feel safer knowing that police are keeping an eye on the drug dealers.
Laurel — Brenda Bosch Napier is undergoing a tough battle with cancer, but her determination has impressed friends and family. They are holding a benefit dinner for her at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, at the Chinook Eagles Club. Drop by and help her out.