Lone Peak Lookout, 4/15/2021
As a voter in Big Sky, I'm disappointed in my representative, Jane Gillette, and her recent vote on the Montana COVID-19 relief bill, known as House Bill 632. Our leaders have the opportunity to put $2.7 billion in federal dollars to work, investing in housing, childcare, infrastructure, and broadband in our state.
The purpose of this bill is to stimulate our economy and provide an opportunity for all of us to get back on our feet after a difficult year. Unfortunately, the bill making its way through the Montana legislature that will disburse this desperately needed funding to our communities penalizes places like Big Sky and Gallatin County. As the bill is currently written, counties, towns, Tribal governments, and school districts with stronger health protection measures than the state will receive less aid than localities without coronavirus protections.
Our county leaders, school board, and other are working hard to keep our communities safe and this provision further hampers the ability of our local economies to thrive again. Big Sky School District is the only district in the state with weekly COVID-19 surveillance testing. The district should be applauded for going the extra mile on health precautions for students, not penalized. Rep. Jane Gillette voted for the provision to penalize Gallatin County rather than advocating for the success, health, and well-being of me and my neighbors.
The only way we can put this last year behind us is if we move forward together. We still have a chance to remove this destructive language from the bill. Call your legislators today and ask them to remove this provision from HB 632.
Big Sky, MT