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Montana has a long history of supporting education. My parents were born in 1915. Their education ended with the eighth grade because they had to assist their parents with farming, housework and childcare. Perhaps their lack of secondary education gave them a purpose to sacrifice and save for the college education of their six daughters. I did not question that I would attend college; it was expected of me. They were proud of the education we received and always voted for taxes to support education.

The six-mill levy makes education more affordable for Montana citizens throughout the state. Montana students are paying 70 percent of tuition costs out-of-pocket, more than double a generation ago. Without the levy, tuition could rise by 16 percent, making college unaffordable for many Montana students and families.

The six-mill levy is an investment in our citizens and in our future. Every community benefits from efforts like the scientific and agricultural research at universities and colleges that keep farmers and ranchers on the cutting edge of new technology and practices and helps protect our fisheries and public lands.

The levy ensures that Montana students have opportunities at four- and two-year colleges to help them compete for the jobs of tomorrow. Nearly 80 percent of Montana graduates find jobs with a year of graduation.

Please join me in supporting the six-mill levy and continuing Montana’s support for our public colleges and universities. Our future is only as bright as the next generation.

Kathy (Standley) Webster James

Billings

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