Noonan Picked to Replace Groesbeck in State House

By Beacon Staff

BUTTE – Butte-Silver Bow commissioners picked Art Noonan on Wednesday to fill the state House seat left vacant by George Groesbeck, who died of a pulmonary embolism Dec. 7.

Noonan has served two terms in the state House, was minority whip in 2007, and was executive director of the Montana Democratic Party. He garnered all 10 votes of the commissioners who attended Wednesday’s meeting and received a standing ovation after speaking about Groesbeck’s agenda and draft bills.

“I have looked at it closely,” he said. “I helped him develop some of it actually. I feel confident to move George’s agenda.”

Noonan will finish Groesbeck’s term, but will not seek re-election to the District 74 seat.

Also nominated for the position was Bob Pavlovich, a longtime state representative, and Larry Cyr, who is retired from the Department of Defense and is a former state lawmaker. Cyr did not attend the commissioners’ meeting and, therefore, was not considered for the position.

The 38-year-old Groesbeck had undergone knee surgery less than a week before he died for injuries sustained in a car accident. He died when a blockage of an artery triggered by a blood clot traveled to his lungs.

Groesbeck had recently won re-election and was appointed chairman of the Federal Relations, Energy and Telecommunications Committee.