Archive for July 18th, 2008

by jhwygirl

Late Friday, right here in Missoula, U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy granted an injunction requested by Earthjustice and 11 other environmental groups.

While those groups celebrated, Idaho and other state officials weren’t so happy. Neither was the USFWS.

Ed Bangs, of the USFWS

“For an injunction, you have to show irreparable harm,” Bangs said. “The hunting of wolves clearly wouldn’t endanger threatened wolf populations. We thought our delisting was a very biologically sound package.”

And I suppose a temporary injunction does irreparable harm? What’s the harm there?

Guess that throws a wrench into FWP’s plans to allow wolves to be hunted this winter. Wyoming and Idaho had also been planning to open wolves to hunting.

by jhwygirl

Only 9 days since the Mt. Sentinel fire.

It’s amazing how fast these things move. I had only driven by it about an hour before and I hadn’t seen a thing. Hopefully, the two old roads up there will serve as a break so that firefighters get this thing out by tonight. It was slightly windy, causing it to move up the hill.

Some pretty fancy helicopter work. These guys have to hate situations like this. Immediately adjacent to the highway with a steep hillside. Winds. It doesn’t even look easy.

I liked these two…the sun was just sinking behind the trees. I thought they looked neat.

The Lolo Volunteers got there pretty quick. The whole fire scene is pretty regimented – for good reason – Montana firefighters have an excellent safety record. These guys and gals (yep – there are female volunteers out there in Lolo, folks!) came ready in their nomex and were standing by waiting for their orders.

by jhwygirl

Blacksmith Brewing is coming to Stevensville, locating itself over on the east side of town near the Cenex.

From what I’m told, they hope to open by the end of the month.

Neighbors near and far – that would include me too – are very excited.

They’ve got some nice pics of their progress up on their website.

Put a menu up Blacksmith! We need to know more!

Maybe they can talk a local farmer down there into growing some hops, and Montana will have it’s first grown-brewed-and-served in Montana beer. Providing, of course, they use some Montana barley too.

by jhwygirl

Who knew the Hip Strip was so highbrow?

Oh yeah – “own a piece of Missoula’s history in the heart of our vibrant downtown” the Lambros MLS notes: Unit 2, one of the turetted units that’s been renovated, is currently being offered at $499,500, while you can opt to pick it up without a complete interior remodel for only $403,532.

I don’t know, maybe I can pick the colors and the cabinets, and see if they’ll take $495,500. Whadda ya think? I can even forego window treatments.

Of particular interest is the east side patio area which will include an outdoor cooking space with a Viking gas grill and Traeger smoker, dining area and landscaping with seating areas. For indoor gatherings, the community room will have a Brunswick 8′ pool table, card table, wet bar, Sony Bravia XBR LCD television and a restroom.

Quite the party house, huh? Wonder what the rest of the tenant’s will say about all that noise?

Of course, if Unit 2 is out of your price range, perhaps Unit 1 will do – you can pick that one up now for steal (sans complete interior remodel) for $415,000. You’ll have to skip the turret, but you still get the top floor, plus you also get a grand staircase entrance!

Then again, if you are really low on cash you can hit up Units 4-13, which range from $237,000 to $298,750.

Unit 13, coming in at 634 sq. ft. (does that include the closets?) will be $237,000 completely renovated – but of course, you can do the reno yourself and save $20,000.

Before you go all crazy, folks – don’t forget to check the HOA fees and docs before you sign the bottom line.

You’ll also need 20% down. Don’t want to make the mortgage banks too nervous.

by jhwygirl

This comes to us via Electric City Weblog.

The Montana Environmental Information Center (MEIC) was denied access to City of Great Falls records pertaining to the possibly soon-to-be-ill-fated coal-fired Highwood Generation Plant being constructed for Southern Electric Generation and Transmission.

The feasibility study is apparently problematic for the city – City Attorney Gliko said that even the preliminary draft was off-limits, citing that “no feasibility study existed, per se,” and that the city was not required to produce preliminary drafts under MCA 2.4.601(2)(ii)(c).

Looks like Great Falls will be picking up the tab on MEIC’s attorney fees too. Ouch.

We’ve blogged on Great Falls here in the past. This is one of my favorites: Quashing Public Comment and Police Strong Arm Tactics in Great Falls.

Big KUDOS to MEIC and its staff. They’ve got an eye on the Highwood Plant and five other proposed coal-fired plants across the state.

You can download the entire order here.

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