Clarify the Issues

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Montana’s Surplus:  The Republican led legislature worked for responsible state budget management and a more favorable tax climate, creating an economy that has resulted in a $500 million turn around in 2 years—from a projected $230 million deficit last session to a $278 million projected surplus by January.


Decrease Taxes:  Growing the economy is a much better way to provide funds for government services, than by pitting big business against small business; rich against the poor, local against state. Through tax reform and a favorable business climate, we can grow the economy and lower taxes on all Montanans.


Active Forest Management:  By continuing to use “best management practices” in state forest management to both help fund our schools and pay the costs of the management, we have an opportunity to improve the policies of the National Forest which has become a drain on taxpayers rather than a productive asset.  Improve upon the already effective public forum format used by Republican legislators in the Flathead to provide input to the Flathead National Forest staff.


Recreation Access to State and National Forests:  Implementing the Endangered Species Act must be based on scientific data, practical applications and common sense.  We must not be held hostage by lawsuits to unreasonable management practices.

Strengthen Families:  By eliminating the Montana marriage penalty tax, we provide hard working Montana families the tax breaks necessary to help support their families’ needs.  Families must remain intact to provide security and stability for our children who will be our next generation and our future.  By making housing, car insurance and health insurance/care more affordable through reforming tort law, the dream of every Montana family to own their own home will become a reality.


Protect Water Rights for All Montanans:  The State of Montana must not negotiate away water rights given by the State Constitution to all Montanans.  The actual language in the state constitution must not be violated by activist judges who seek intent rather than sticking to the actual words.  It is imperative that we stand firm in the adjudication of these rights and protect the water rights for all Montanans.



Deregulation can have a silver lining:


Deregulation legislation was carried by a Democrat (Bill Ryan, Great Falls) and passed the House 78 to 21 and the Senate 35 to 15. Let’s make electricity cheaper by increasing supply rather than regulating it and creating a shortage.  If Democrats would help us eliminate the law suits by obstructionists against new electricity power plants throughout Montana, we could sell more electricity to other states and lower our own energy costs.

GOOD NEWS:  Production of oil and gas in Eastern Montana is now up 42% from 1999.  Most of this increase came in the first 3 years after Republican tax reform took place.  Combining increased production with the high price for the product has increased the tax income from 30.8 million in 1999 to 92.6 for 2004.  This upward trend in tax revenue will continue unless tax policies are reversed due to a change in leadership.