Weekend: Economic Outlook, Baucus Sotomayor, Gas Card Fraud

By Beacon Staff

Good morning; on the Beacon today, the recession in Montana will bottom out in 2009 and the economy will begin to improve, according to two economists at the University of Montana, but that recovery will be slow and gradual over the coming years. During the recession, however, owners of area guest ranches have been dealt a tough blow to their belt buckles as many people have recently opted out of saddling up and settling into these all-inclusive vacations. Kalispell’s Dream Dancers Dance Studio will perform at halftime of the Orange Bowl. A 33-year-old Kalispell woman, Summer Fetters, who pleaded guilty to theft of government funds for food stamp fraud has been ordered to pay nearly $16,000 in restitution for welfare benefits she was not entitled to receive. A 30-year-old Polson man, John S. Jarvis, has been ordered to pay $4,300 in restitution for charging gasoline purchases to stolen government credit cards. And Warren Miller describes an epic quest to pick up a rowboat.

U.S. Sen. Max Baucus said he will vote for Sonia Sotomayor‘s nomination to the Supreme Court. A Crow Indian chief, Joe Medicine Crow, who wore war paint beneath his World War II uniform and went on to become an acclaimed Native American historian will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom next month. Increasing state land leases are crunching homeowners with cabins on that land. And Walter Breuning of Great Falls, newly the world’s oldest man, has no time for all the nonsensical questions now being put to him.

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