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Missoula County Weekly | June 24-July 1: County budget and your property taxes; new podcast episode; community conversation in Clinton this week

Post Date:06/24/2024 4:15 PM

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Commissioners encourage residents to get involved in county budget process

Following preliminary budget presentations in Missoula and Seeley Lake, the Missoula County commissioners are encouraging residents to participate in the County’s budget process. Residents can watch the Missoula presentation online to learn how the County decides what to prioritize in its budget and how the county budget impacts property taxes.

Staff will also present budget requests to the commissioners at their administrative public meetings, starting at the Tuesday, July 9, meeting. These public meetings take place at 10 a.m. most Tuesdays and Thursdays in Room 206 of the Administration Building, 199 W. Pine St. Participants can also join virtually via Teams, and the meetings are recorded and posted to the County’s YouTube channel. Agendas and information on how to join meetings virtually are available online at missoula.co/bccmeetings.  

Residents can learn more about the budget and stay up to date on ways to participate by visiting missoulacountyvoice.com

New podcast episode: Celebrating 50 Years of The Poverello Center

2024 marks the 50th anniversary of The Poverello Center, Missoula’s nonprofit homelessness shelter and advocacy organization. This week the Missoula County commissioners spoke with Jill Bonny, director of the Pov, about the history, changing demographics and current challenges of serving individuals in need of housing, food and human connection. Click here to listen or find it wherever you get your podcasts under "The Agenda with the Missoula County Commissioners."

Commissioners, county staff to hold community conversation in Clinton

Residents of the Clinton area are invited to a community conversation with Missoula County commissioners and department officials. The event will be from 5:30 to 8 p.m., Thursday, June 27, at the Clinton Elementary School, 20397 E. Mullan Road. Food and beverages will be provided first-come, first-served. 

Montana Dept. of Transportation to host open house on US 93 corridor study

The Montana Department of Transportation is hosting an open house Tuesday, June 25, at the Lolo School (5305 Farm Lane) about the status and proposed solutions for the US 93 Missoula to Florence Corridor Study. Members of the public are invited to attend from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. or 4 to 7 p.m.  Study experts will be on hand to answer questions and the same information will be provided at both open house sessions. There will not be a formal presentation.

Additionally, MDT has published a video about the corridor study process and what types of solutions are available to address safety issues along US 93. More information can be found online.

Prepare your home for wildfire season

Many Missoula County residents live within the Wildland-Urban Interface, which is any area where the combination of development (like homes and businesses) and nearby vegetation can result in an increased risk of damage from wildfires. Visit missoula.co/wildfireprep to see the WUI map and links to other resources.  

Colt Fire burns near Seeley Lake, July 2023Here are some ways to reduce the risk of property damage or loss before wildfire season:  

• Regularly remove plant debris like leaves from around your home. Embers carried by the wind can easily ignite dry materials in gutters or on your roof.  

Request a free Wildfire Risk Assessment from the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation. A local fire professional on how to prepare your land and house for wildfire.

• Reduce flammable materials. Wildfire Ready Missoula has a cost-share program to help individuals and communities reduce flammable fuels around homes and private property. This is a collaborative program between United Way, Missoula County and local contractors.    

• Contact your local fire district for more information on wildfire fuel mitigation. Missoula Rural Fire and Frenchtown Fire both offer fuel mitigation services to property owners living in their districts.

 

Commissioners seek applicants for planning board

Do you live outside city limits and want a chance to weigh in on development happening in the Missoula urban area? Apply to serve on the Missoula Consolidated Planning Board! Missoula County is currently seeking applicants to fill a vacant alternate seat on the board, with a term that runs through Dec. 31, 2025. 

The board ensures Missoula County and City cooperate so future development positively impacts the health, safety, convenience and welfare of residents. Board meetings are held at 6 p.m. on the first and third Tuesday of each month in the Courthouse Annex Sophie Moiese Room or virtually via Teams. 

Click here for more information and to submit an application.

Missoula County myth busters logo

Mythbuster: “Unless I live within the City of Missoula or a community council boundary, I have no representation within Missoula County.”

This is FALSE. The Missoula County commissioners represent all residents within Missoula County, regardless of where they live. All residents, even those who live in communities outside of a community council or City of Missoula boundary, have the same rights as those within community council or city boundaries to speak up at public meetings, engage with the County on Missoula County Voice, or call or email county officials.

Though community councils can help be liaisons between their community and Missoula County, these bodies are advisory only and do not vote on or enforce county policies. Not residing within a community council does not mean you can’t engage with the County yourself. 

Engage with us on Missoula County Voice! 

Don’t miss these opportunities to get involved with county government:

Job openings

Looking for a job with great benefits? Join our team at Missoula County! Benefits include health, dental and vision insurance; paid parental leave and vacation, sick and holiday leave; free and confidential counseling services through an Employee Assistance Program; and enrollment in the Public Employees’ Retirement System. The following departments are hiring:       

 

  • Animal Control
  • Clerk of District Court
  • Fairgrounds
  • Facilities
  • Financial Services
  • Office of Emergency Management
  • Missoula Public Library
  • Missoula Public Health
  • Partnership Health Center
  • Planning, Development and Sustainability
  • Public Works

See the full list of job openings at Missoula County and apply today!  

Missoula County in the News:

Selected Upcoming Events at County Facilities:

Find more events this week on the County’s Event Calendar!     

What are the commissioners up to? 

Recently, the Missoula County commissioners…

  • Approved a facility use agreement between the Missoula Food Bank and Community Center and Missoula Public Health to provide space for WIC programs at the Food Bank location at 1720 Wyoming St.
  • Signed a grant award and special conditions for the Western Region Juvenile Detention Grant, FY25. Missoula County administers this grant, with funding provided by the Montana Board of Crime Control, for multiple western region agencies and provides funding for detention services for juveniles.
  • Approved a contract with United Minds for on-call services to provide evaluations for involuntary commitments on behalf of the Missoula County Attorney’s Office, including testimony in court.
  • Approved a cooperative law enforcement agreement between the US Forest Service/Lolo National Forest and the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office. This agreement includes patrol of campgrounds and USFS lands. This contract helps offset Sheriff’s Office personnel costs and equipment.
  • Signed the grant agreement with the Montana Department of Natural Resources in the amount of $80,000 to enhance the county fire warden program.
  • Approved a five-year contract between Wellpath and the Missoula County Detention Facility for health care, including behavioral and dental care, for inmates at the jail.
  • Approved a contract between Missoula Public Health and Advanced Chemical Transport to provide waste collection, transportation and disposal services associated with the County's household hazardous waste collection efforts. MPH and HomeResource will be opening a household chemical waste facility this summer.
  • Conducted the canvass of the June 4 primary election results.
  • Attended the annual Juneteenth celebration at the Historical Museum at Fort Missoula.
  • Held a special public meeting about Western Materials’ request for a use variance to expand their gravel pit near Lolo. The commissioner took no formal action and continued the hearing to Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 2 p.m.

 Keep up with the commissioners yourself by attending a public meeting. Commissioners’ meetings and selected board meetings for the upcoming week are listed below, with links to agendas and Microsoft Teams links: 

Tuesday, June 25

No meetings scheduled

Wednesday, June 26

 Thursday, June 27

 Monday, July 1

 Please note that agendas for department and administrative meetings are published two business days before the meeting, and public meeting agendas are published the Friday before the meeting. Administrative and public meeting video recordings are available on the Missoula County YouTube page, and MCAT plays the public meetings live on Spectrum Channel 190.

Email bcc@missoulacounty.us or call 406-258-4877 if you have any questions or comments on an upcoming meeting.