Shannon James

There are a considerable number of bills moving forward in the state legislature that would threaten our democracy on a local level.

Montana legislators are considering bills that would allow special interests to steamroll over community concerns and prevent local governments from taking action on climate and energy.

Some of the bills that have yet to be defeated are SB 208, SB 228, and HB 241.

SB 208 is an attempt to lock Montanans into continued use of methane gas, which is a major source of harmful air pollution in homes, as well as a potent greenhouse gas contributing to the climate crisis.

SB 228 aims to prevent communities from making local decisions about oil and gas proposals and infrastructure, essentially forcing Montana communities to accept fossil fuel proposals of all sizes, even those they deem dangerous.

HB 241 would obstruct efforts by local governments that could make installing rooftop solar panels easier and more affordable. This seems to be a shameless effort to stall Montana’s transition to renewable energy.

We all want to breathe clean air, drink clean water, and safeguard our communities from the worst threats of the climate crisis. We know what’s best for our communities. These bills represent an effort by a handful of state lawmakers to appease corporate interests and take away power from local voters. This is an overstep by the legislature; it’s unnecessary and uncalled for.

Contact your legislator and ask them to protect the local communities of Montana and oppose these bills.