Wednesday: County Owes Deputies, Property Reappraisal, Santa Ticketed

By Beacon Staff

Good morning; on this date in 1969, the U.S. Air Force’s UFO study, “Project Blue Book” was terminated.

On the Beacon this morning, we’ve got our seasonal “Best of Preps” feature, where we highlight the top high school athletes in the area. Check out Lido’s slideshow of some of the best talent this valley has to offer. A district judge has ruled that Flathead County has been miscalculating the salaries of sheriff’s deputies, and could owe up to $1 million in back pay. A Bigfork man who accidentally shot a grizzly was ordered to pay $2,000 and educate young hunters about target identification. The Montana Land Board approved an innovative land exchange yesterday that opens up a large swath of land for the “Trail Runs Through It” project in Whitefish. Kalispell City Council was busy Monday night, clearing the way for the city manager to declare the KGEZ radio towers a hazard and negotiate a deal to move them, as well as approving a budget revision that slashes $100,000 from the general fund.

State lawmakers met in Helena yesterday to try to figure out a way to ease the strain of property tax reappraisal, sure to be a major issue in the upcoming session. The Department of Environmental Quality ruled that the air permit for the Highwood coal-fired power plant outside Great Falls is valid, a win for the developers of the project. A coalition of environmental groups announced yesterday the wolverine and arctic grayling, two Montana native species, were among the ten animals most in need of endangered species protection.

And finally, only in New York City would Santa Claus get a parking ticket from a “Scrooge Cop” while he was delivering presents. Have a great day.

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