Billings City Council

Recent Posts

Council to vote again on backing local option tax idea


The Billings City Council will decide Monday night whether to endorse efforts to pass a new kind of statewide local option sales tax—or to postpone a decision until a bill draft lays out more details on the proposal. The council also will be asked to approve a two-page list of priorities that the city will pursue during the 2017 Montana Legislature, one of the priorities being a commitment to support a local option tax of some kind. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Council takes 1st vote on big downtown project Monday

Big Building

The Billings City Council will have its first chance to endorse a multimillion-dollar downtown development project when it meets Monday night. The council will be asked to vote on a pre-development memorandum of understanding with the developers proposing to create the One Big Sky Center in the area of First Avenue North and North 29th Street. (more…) Continue Reading →

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City Council gives first nod to downtown project


The public and private partners working on a huge development in downtown Billings got their first nod of approval Monday night from the City Council. By general assent—since no actual votes are taken at council work sessions like the one held Monday—developers of the One Big Sky Center got the green light to present the council with a predevelopment agreement at the council’s Sept. 12 meeting. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Prairie Lights: A perfectly bad fix for a nonexistent problem


A couple of weeks ago, I was walking my dogs through the downtown skate park and I had just cleaned up after one of them. A city parks worker, who was there to empty the trash bins, saw me picking up after my dog and went out of his way to thank me. As a token of his thanks, I guess, he also handed me a couple of dog-waste bags. At the time I considered it a pleasant exchange, one that made me feel good about city government. (more…) Continue Reading →

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David Crisp: Sick but still working—it’s the American way


Ed Kemmick makes me sick. Well, that’s not strictly true, or at least I hope not. But it is true that practically since the day we began our new partnership at Last Best News, I have been tormented by an unrelenting cold that leaves me most days feeling like I have been beaten with a stick. And some days thinking that a beating would be an improvement. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Prairie Lights: Who will do the work newspapers once did?


Sometimes, one of the best things a newspaper can do for its readers is to assign reporters to watch paint dry. During the years I covered City Hall for the Billings Gazette, I spent hundreds of hours so employed, and even when the process was stupefyingly boring it never seemed like a waste of time. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Prairie Lights: Three favorite books, non-candidate division


I was recently asked by a community group that will be interviewing Billings City Council candidates if I had any questions for the candidates. My suggestion wasn’t really a question, it was this: “Name your three favorite books.” (more…) Continue Reading →

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Prairie Lights: NDO will hinge on results of fall election


A former Billings City Council candidate who has inserted himself oafishly into this year’s council race has, purely by accident, exposed a general misunderstanding of how that legislative body conducts its business. Brian Kenat, a Tea Party Republican who unsuccessfully ran against Ward 3 Councilwoman Becky Bird in 2013, has been calling council candidates to sound them out on their beliefs—and to badger them if he didn’t like their views. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Troubling phone calls reported in City Council race

Ward Map

At least two people running for seats on the Billings City Council said they received harassing phone calls from a former council candidate, and one of the current candidates said the caller told him he was wasting his time and should drop out of the race. The caller, Brian Kenat, said he is active in Republican and Tea Party politics and was only trying to find out where the candidates stood on various issues, and he denied advising anyone to end his candidacy. (more…) Continue Reading →

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