BSED Finance Department May Merge with Helena CDC


Big Sky Economic Development is considering merging their Certified Development Company (CDC), which administers SBA loans, with the Montana Community Finance Corporation, another CDC based in Helena.
The move would help EDA/EDC in their goal of expanding their Business Finance Department into western Montana, said Brandon Berger, who oversees the Finance Department. EDA (Economic Development Authority) and EDC (Economic Development Corporation) boards directed staff to continue exploring the possibility of a merger, at their monthly joint board meeting, last week.

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Gas Tax Proposal Dies -- This Time Around


A resolution before Yellowstone County Commissioners, to set a public hearing to consider putting on the ballot a two-cent tax on gas, failed for a lack of a “second” to the motion, last week.
With Commissioner Jim Reno absent, the issue garnered only a motion for approval from Commissioner Bill Kennedy, who was responsible for putting the item on the agenda. Commissioner John Ostlund refused to second it because, he said, “I have no interest in [Yellowstone County] being the highest priced gas tax in Montana.”

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County Land Purchase

Yellowstone County Commissioners are purchasing a property across the road at 3150 King Avenue East from the Yellowstone County Detention Center. Cheryl A. Safty is selling the property for $258,155.

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Property Valuation Increases In Yellowstone County


A modest increase in the taxable value of property in Yellowstone County will generate about a half million more dollars in property taxes for the county in 2017 than in 2016, according to information received from the Montana Department of Revenue by County Finance Director Kevan Bryan.

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County Commissioners Support Spring Creek Mine


At the request of the Spring Creek Mine for their support, Yellowstone County Commissioners have sent a letter commenting on the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement’s draft environmental assessment. The plan will renew and modify Spring Creek Mine’s federal coal lease.

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County Taxing Entities Worry About Large Tax Protests


County Commissioners have asked the Montana Department of Revenue to act more expediently on the CHS refinery’s tax protest and to more accurately set the county’s taxable valuable, so tax jurisdictions in the county can better budget.
“This is big stuff,” said Kevan Bryan, County Finance Director, concerned that CHS is seeking more a of reduction than the county guesstimated and that there will likely be no settlement for almost two years.

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Economic Update, Aug. 9


Join the ‘Montana University’ of the Montana Chamber Foundation and the University of Montana Bureau of Business and Economic Research for the 11th Annual Economic Update Series, ‘The Competition for Talent’. The event will be in Billings, Tuesday, August 9 at the Crowne Plaza , 7 a.m.

Read more: Economic Update, Aug. 9

MetraPark Considers Conducting Feasibility Study of Ag Events


What steps to take in the development of Metra Park’s livestock area, sometimes referred to as the “backside,” is a question that has been bantered about among MetraPark administrators and users for some time.
Following a recent review of a 2010 Master Plan, the Metra Park Advisory Board determined at their last meeting to explore the prospects of getting a grant to do a feasibility study, estimated to cost between $30,000 and $40,000, to identify what improvements or facilities would generate more income to Metra Park.

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Zone Change Will Allow Billings Flying Service to Expand

In a split vote, County Commissioners approved a highly controversial zone change request– one that will allow a 50-year old family-owned helicopter business in Yellowstone County to continue to grow next to the Billings Airport. The decision came after almost 40 citizens testified during a two and a half hour public hearing in a standing-room-only commissioners’ board room.

Read more: Zone Change Will Allow Billings Flying Service to Expand

Market Update

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