Tom Hanel

Recent Posts

St. Vincent gearing up for move into new building

Society

The move of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul charity office and thrift store to a new building south of the railroad tracks began about three years. Ernie Dutton, who had done some volunteer work for St. Vincent de Paul, was coming out of a Rotary meeting at what is now the DoubleTree by Hilton and decided to walk across Montana Avenue to the charity office. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Big Sky Pride fest returns to city, Egnew runs for mayor

Falls

Big Sky Pride is bringing its annual LGBT celebration back to Billings for the first time in nearly a decade, and organizers say it will be the biggest one ever. The week-long celebration will kick off with a Community Night at Hooligan’s Sports Bar this Monday and end with a “Recovery Brunch” on Sunday, June 18, at the Last Chance Pub & Cider Mill. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Third candidate, Bill Cole, announces run for mayor

Cole

Billings lawyer Bill Cole is now the third announced candidate hoping to replace Mayor Tom Hanel in the city election this fall. He joins architect Randy Hafer and state legislator Jeff Essmann, both of whom announced their candidacies in the past couple of weeks. Hanel is nearing the end of his second term as mayor, and under the City Charter, the mayor and City Council members are limited to two consecutive terms. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Interest already high in upcoming Billings city election

Paige

With three days to go before candidates can file to run in Billings municipal races, it’s already shaping up to be an unusually interesting election year. Architect Randy Hafer became the first person to throw his hat in the ring, announcing earlier this month that he intends to run for mayor. The mayor’s race is wide open because Tom Hanel, having served two consecutive terms, can’t run again this year. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Opinion: Mayor Hanel owes millennials an apology

Clark

Dear Mayor Tom Hanel,

I am writing to you to express my concern regarding a comment you made during the Nov. 21 Billings City Council meeting. Your statement, “If millennials want to move because Billings is boring, I’ll sell their home for them,” is disappointing at best. You, as the mayor, are the figurehead and vocal proponent of our great city. With that title comes great responsibility. Continue Reading →

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One Big Sky Center gets council nod to take next step

Lectern

One Big Sky Center, a proposed development that would create the tallest building in Montana as the centerpiece of a $165 million project in downtown Billings, won the grudging support of the City Council Monday night. On a 6-2 vote, with two absences and one abstention, the council approved a memorandum of understanding with the project developers, giving them until June 30 to work with city staff and the city’s legal and financial consultants to come up with a final development agreement. (more…) Continue Reading →

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Big downtown project faces questions, serious doubts

Backers of the huge building project proposed for downtown Billings will have to persuade a majority of the City Council to put up at least $30 million in public funds for the project to work. The tougher job might be winning the support of the city’s finance director, Pat Weber, to whom a lot of council members will be looking for guidance. (more…) Continue Reading →

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City Council gives first nod to downtown project

Center

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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Plucky starlet excited about move to Magic City

JL

Jennifer Lawrence is moving to Billings! It’s true. The “Hunger Games” star said she’s had it with Hollywood and she wants to live in a town where people know their neighbors, where a celebrity can go to the 7-Eleven in her pajamas at 1 a.m. for a pack of smokes without a gang of paparazzi dogging her every step of the way. (more…) Continue Reading →

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A few surprises at a low-key Trumpfest

Hall

I’m not sure what I was expecting when I went to the Donald J. Trump rally Thursday afternoon, but I wasn’t expecting anything quite so low key. There were probably 6,000 or 7,000 people on hand, and while they waved signs and cheered loudly enough, it seemed to me that they were mostly excited about the fact that they were finally able to attend a Trump rally, rather than passionate about Trump himself. What was even more surprising was that Trump seemed so much less menacing in person. All the comparisons with Hitler seemed ludicrous. He’s no Hitler and he’s no Mussolini. Continue Reading →

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