Thursday: Bigfork Stormwater, Wolf Delisting, Elk or Llama?

By Beacon Staff

Good morning and happy birthday to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

On the Beacon today, the top story statewide is the announcement yesterday that the Bush administration intends to delist the gray wolf in the Northern Rockies and western Great Lakes region, but not Wyoming. Keriann Lynch looks at the implications of the layoffs announced last week by Semitool and Plum Creek. Bigfork is seeking funds for a “dirty little secret”: its dilapidated stormwater drainage system. Former U.S. Olympic cross-country racer Leslie Thompson-Hall will be giving clinics at the Izaak Walton Inn’s Ski Fest this weekend in Essex. U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., has convinced Lisa Jackson, the nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency to travel to Libby if she is confirmed, and reconsider declaring its asbestos poisoning a public health emergency. And Beacon Columnist Wild Bill Schneider believes the Obama Administration has bigger fish to fry than worrying about overturning the new rule allowing concealed guns in some national parks. U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont., voted for the bill to expand children’s health care yesterday, which passed the House overwhelmingly. Montana’s health care executives sounded off on the myriad problems in the U.S. medical industry yesterday at a hearing before the Legislature. The insurance industry lined up against a Bitterroot lawmaker’s bill to offer insurance breaks to homeowners in the wildland-urban interface who take steps to mitigate their wildfire risks.

And finally, New York hunter Rusty Saunders has become infamous on the Internet after photos emerged that he shot a feral llama in Paradise Valley, mistaking it for a Rocky Mountain Elk. Have a great day.

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