First local government review meeting

  The study commission started its first round of public meetings April 13 in Baker.  The informational meeting provided residents with an opportunity to learn about the different local government options available at the local level in Montana, about 30 people attended.

By Lori Kesinger

   To ensure ongoing flexibility at the local level in Montana, the state constitution gave local governments expanded authority and abilities to self govern. The provision requiring elections every ten years on whether to assess the functions of local governments was included in the 1972 Montana Constitution.  Last year, voters of Fallon County and the City of Baker chose to conduct a review of the local governments form and function.

  Dan Clark, Director of MSU’s Local Government Center, presented an overview of the existing form of government and compared it to alternative forms of government available under state law.

   The study commissions will continue with their assessments, taking input and listening to what people have to say.  The information gathered will determine what will eventually go on the ballot.

   The County study commission members are John Beach, Sandy Kinsey and Val Johnson (replacing Marty Nelson).  City members are Jade Boggs, Chad Wade and Carson Beach.