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New pastor at First English seeks to foster a loving faith community

New pastor at First English seeks to foster a loving faith community

A month into her ministry at First English Lutheran Church in Billings, the Rev. Stacey Siebrasse hopes to help move the congregation in a direction it was already headed — as a church “with an authentic way of being in our community and in our world.”

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Some deputy court clerks granted exemption from issuing same-sex marriage licenses

Some deputy court clerks granted exemption from issuing same-sex marriage licenses

As many as four deputies in the Yellowstone County Clerk of District Court’s office have indicated their unwillingness to issue wedding licenses for same-sex couples, and for now they won’t have to.

November 21, 2014 11:08 am Photos

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Two gay couples turned away at the courthouse by balky computers

Two gay couples turned away at the courthouse by balky computers

Two gay couples hoping to be the first in Yellowstone County to tie the knot Wednesday afternoon were done in by the state’s computer system.

November 19, 2014 4:37 pm Photos

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Get the picture? Charter customers line up for digital cable boxes

Get the picture? Charter customers line up for digital cable boxes

Charter Communications customers who woke up without a picture on their television Tuesday morning seemed to know just how to get it back.

November 18, 2014 4:30 pm Photos

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City Council hears from its lobbyist

Once the Montana Legislature gets down to business Jan. 5, 2015, Ed Bartlett will be the Billings City Council’s eyes, ears — and mouthpiece, too — at the state capitol.

November 18, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
Strategy is key to Billings man's board game, marketing plan

Strategy is key to Billings man's board game, marketing plan

Billings resident Kevin Scharfe loves playing board games, but there are two things about them for which he doesn’t much care.

November 18, 2014 6:00 am Photos

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City Council can avoid a federal fine by self-reporting filing deficiencies

If the Billings City Council moves swiftly enough, the city can avoid paying civil penalties to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for late reporting on past bond issues.

November 17, 2014 6:00 amLoading…

Giving voice to the Jolly Old Elf

As his busy time ramps up, Santa Claus apparently accepts help anywhere he can find it.

November 16, 2014 8:00 amLoading…
Summit aims to help make Billings a more diverse and inclusive city

Summit aims to help make Billings a more diverse and inclusive city

The 30 or so people who attended Not In Our Town’s Summit on Hate on Saturday learned that everyone is biased — and it’s OK.

November 15, 2014 8:00 pmLoading…
A chance to pig out: Long lines at first-ever Bacon Fest

A chance to pig out: Long lines at first-ever Bacon Fest

Organizer Rick Roddam of Townsquare Media had a modest goal for Billings’ first Bacon Fest, held Saturday at the Montana Convention Center and attended by more than 1,000 lovers of all things porcine.

November 15, 2014 5:00 pm Photos

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No ruling on Gazette request for landfill-related documents

No ruling on Gazette request for landfill-related documents

Yellowstone County District Court Judge Michael G. Moses said Thursday he needs more information before he can rule on whether and in what form the city of Billings must turn over documents to The Billings Gazette related to potential financial irregularities at the city landfill.

November 13, 2014 1:00 pmLoading…
'Sobering center' suggested to address homeless, transient problem downtown

'Sobering center' suggested to address homeless, transient problem downtown

Creating a place for intoxicated people to sober up could be a key part of addressing downtown Billings’ homeless and transient problems.

November 12, 2014 4:58 pmLoading…
Firefighters have 'terrible time' battling house fire; 5 dogs rescued, but others perished

Firefighters have 'terrible time' battling house fire; 5 dogs rescued, but others perished

At least two dogs died Wednesday morning in a fire that tore through a West End home, sending homeowner Bonnie Willis running barefoot into the frigid streets for safety.

November 12, 2014 9:15 am Photos

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Billings Clinic rolls out vein scanners to securely identify patients

Billings Clinic rolls out vein scanners to securely identify patients

Admissions personnel at Billings Clinic have begun taking their patients’ names in vein.

November 12, 2014 6:00 am Photos

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City, Gazette will square off in court Thursday over landfill documents

City, Gazette will square off in court Thursday over landfill documents

A legal dispute about whether the city of Billings must turn over documents to The Billings Gazette that might detail possible employee misconduct at the city’s landfill is headed for Yellowstone County District Court.

November 12, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
Remembrance, honor: Caring for veterans and their families is a year-round duty

Remembrance, honor: Caring for veterans and their families is a year-round duty

About 75 people — most of them veterans — gathered at the Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark for a Veterans Day celebration Tuesday on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month to remember and honor those who have served or are serving in the nation’s armed forces.

November 11, 2014 11:26 am Photos

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Council authorizes refinancing the bonds that built Dehler Park

Council authorizes refinancing the bonds that built Dehler Park

Homeowners sometimes save themselves a few thousand dollars by refinancing their homes to lower their interest payments.

November 11, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
Monday's City Council meeting to discuss Heights land annexation

Monday's City Council meeting to discuss Heights land annexation

A hearing on a proposed annexation, another on the proposed removal of what’s known as a slope easement and a bond refund are the three main pieces of business before the Billings City Council Monday.

November 10, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
Mentors provide support, structure to people in veterans court

Mentors provide support, structure to people in veterans court

It’s ingrained in military culture never to leave a fellow warrior behind. Mentors paired with offenders in the Yellowstone County Veterans Treatment Court have carried that imperative throughout their adult lives, decades after their own military service.

November 10, 2014 6:00 am Photos

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Vista volunteer works to ease burdens of military families

Vista volunteer works to ease burdens of military families

As the wife of a Coast Guard reservist who previously served eight years in active duty, Erica Zutz understands the challenges of military families: modest pay, busy schedules and the hassle of finding — and affording — quality child care.

November 07, 2014 7:30 pmLoading…
Billings sculptor has carved out his niche in the doll market

Billings sculptor has carved out his niche in the doll market

The doll designer who would grow up to make spot-on tiny tributes to such beauties as Elizabeth Taylor got his start making a Humpty-Dumpty doll after he couldn’t find one in Billings.

November 06, 2014 5:15 pmLoading…
'It was to be a temporary move': Battlefield superintendent seeks to have artifacts returned

'It was to be a temporary move': Battlefield superintendent seeks to have artifacts returned

HARDIN — National Park Service officials believe it’ll take constructing a new visitor center at the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument before nearly 185,000 artifacts now being stored in Arizona can be returned and displayed.

November 06, 2014 3:00 pm Photos

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Leaders regroup after public safety levy fails

Leaders regroup after public safety levy fails

Officials expressed some surprise and plenty of disappointment that voters narrowly turned down the Billings public safety levy Tuesday.

November 06, 2014 6:00 amLoading…

Budget, Policy Center publication details the basics of Montana property taxes

On the heels of property tax bills that were mailed to homeowners last week, the Montana Budget and Policy Center has published a seven-page document explaining Montana’s property tax system.

November 05, 2014 7:00 pmLoading…
Billings voters reject public safety mill levy

Billings voters reject public safety mill levy

The Billings public safety levy was defeated 51.5 percent to 48.5 percent in Tuesday's election, according to unofficial final results from the Yellowstone County Elections Office as of 1 a.m.

November 04, 2014 8:18 pmLoading…

New sidewalk policy will help eliminate 'trippers'

Billings could soon become a safer place for pedestrians, bicyclists, skateboarders and people in wheelchairs.

November 04, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
Zimmerman trail closed Tuesday for maintenance work

Zimmerman trail closed Tuesday for maintenance work

Owing to the Election Day holiday for city and state crews and their road projects, a Billings contractor has the time Tuesday morning to perform guardrail repair work along Zimmerman Trail.

November 03, 2014 4:51 pmLoading…
Report: Fewer residents are chatting, texting while driving

Report: Fewer residents are chatting, texting while driving

It may seem like every other driver in Billings is speaking on a cellphone.

November 03, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
'This is how witches and wizards cook': Kids learn better living through Halloween chemistry

'This is how witches and wizards cook': Kids learn better living through Halloween chemistry

A Rocky Mountain College associate chemistry professor and three of his students proved on Halloween that anyone can enjoy better living through chemistry — provided they don’t mind being frightened a little.

October 31, 2014 12:53 pm Photos

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Day 2 of the homeless summit given to brainstorming what might work

Day 2 of the homeless summit given to brainstorming what might work

Attendees and organizers alike left day two of the Community Innovations Summit clamoring for more.

October 30, 2014 2:10 pmLoading…
Little Bighorn battlefield seeks ideas on a new or expanded visitor center

Little Bighorn battlefield seeks ideas on a new or expanded visitor center

Officials at the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument are seeking ideas from the public to address what Superintendent Denice Swanke called in a news release “management problems posed by the outdated visitor center.”

October 29, 2014 5:05 pmLoading…
Looking for new ways to help Billings' homeless and transient population

Looking for new ways to help Billings' homeless and transient population

Billings has the pieces in place to stem its transient and homeless problems, a panel of experts from San Antonio and San Diego said during a press conference preceding the Community Innovations Summit Wednesday afternoon.

October 29, 2014 1:56 pmLoading…
Hail damage repairs keep Billings landfill busy, but lines are getting shorter

Hail damage repairs keep Billings landfill busy, but lines are getting shorter

It may not be so apparent for those people waiting in what are sometimes hourlong lines at the Billings landfill, but the number of monthly visits has gone down from its summer peak.

October 28, 2014 4:59 pmLoading…

Billings City Council to explore offering city employees health care choice

With an eye toward offering city employees choice in who provides their medical care, the Billings City Council will be taking a look at how health care provider contracts are devised and agreed upon.

October 28, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
City needs a lot of help filling boards and commissions

City needs a lot of help filling boards and commissions

Mayor Tom Hanel and the Billings City Council have a number of openings to fill on city boards and commissions — including an even dozen positions on the Mayor’s Homelessness Committee.

October 27, 2014 4:23 pmLoading…

City Council looking to keep up with a growing community

If Monday’s Billings City Council consent agenda is any indication, the Magic City will continue to grow.

October 27, 2014 6:00 amLoading…
Laurel must decide what to do with its leaky, rusting pool

Laurel must decide what to do with its leaky, rusting pool

LAUREL — The corrosive effects of chlorine — and the natural decay that occurs over nearly eight decades of community use — are readily visible at the Laurel city pool at Thompson Park.

October 27, 2014 6:00 am Photos

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Group teaches residents how to lobby for climate issues

Group teaches residents how to lobby for climate issues

It was part civics lesson, part how-to and can-do training Saturday morning as a group of nearly 20 residents learned how they can form a Citizens Climate Lobby.

October 25, 2014 7:00 pm Photos

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Downtown passers-by share sentiments on what makes for a better community

Downtown passers-by share sentiments on what makes for a better community

Folks on foot over the lunch hour Friday were invited by 20-somethings wearing green T-shirts to write all over a downtown building.

October 24, 2014 3:38 pm Photos

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Chronically homeless the subject of next week's summit

Chronically homeless the subject of next week's summit

If nothing else, next week’s two-day Community Innovations Summit could benefit tens of thousands of people who work or live in Billings by devising better, more coordinated ways to deal with the 14 percent of Billings’ 600-700 homeless people who are considered chronically homeless.

October 23, 2014 6:00 pmLoading…
'Man Up' panel speaks during a conference on preventing sexual, domestic violence

'Man Up' panel speaks during a conference on preventing sexual, domestic violence

It was the men who took center stage during the opening of a two-day conference on ending sexual and domestic violence Wednesday morning.

October 22, 2014 3:36 pmLoading…
Conference seeks ways to end domestic, sexual violence

Conference seeks ways to end domestic, sexual violence

More than 100 people — an equal mix of American Indians and others from around the state — are in Billings on Wednesday and Thursday to attend the “Standing in Solidarity to End Sexual and Domestic Violence” conference.

October 21, 2014 4:22 pmLoading…
Business loss varied along Grand Avenue construction route

Business loss varied along Grand Avenue construction route

The months of work to replace water and sewer lines beneath Grand Avenue may be an inconvenience for drivers, but for some business owners and their employees, it’s been a slightly more than that — depending on what’s being sold and where the selling is occurring.

October 21, 2014 6:00 am Photos

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Neighborhood tow trucks would speed response times, wreckers argue

The Billings City Council will ponder during a future meeting whether to allow parking of tow trucks in residential neighborhoods in an effort to speed the time wreckers can respond to accidents.

October 21, 2014 12:00 amLoading…
One-time Billings mayoral candidate now advising generals in the nation's capital

One-time Billings mayoral candidate now advising generals in the nation's capital

Nine years ago, Al Garver ran for mayor of Billings, losing by about eight percentage points to former Billings Police Chief Ron Tussing.

October 20, 2014 6:00 am Photos

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Council to consider new plan for tow truck response

The Billings City Council on Monday will discuss a proposal to allow commercial tow trucks serving the needs of the Montana Highway Patrol and Billings police to park in residential neighborhoods for improved emergency response.

October 20, 2014 12:00 amLoading…
After 40 forums on safety levy, voters get final say

After 40 forums on safety levy, voters get final say

Todd Buchanan, the main advocate for the public safety levy that will be decided by Billings voters Nov. 4, has helped lead about 40 presentations designed to bring voters up to speed on what proponents view as a clear need to boost public safety funding.

October 19, 2014 12:15 am Related Loading…
Public safety levy 101: Here's everything you need to know

Public safety levy 101: Here's everything you need to know

What’s being asked of taxpayers?

October 19, 2014 12:00 amLoading…
A functional oasis: Shiloh Conservation area opens on West End

A functional oasis: Shiloh Conservation area opens on West End

Just a few yards from the ribbon-cutting ceremony that officially opened the Shiloh Conservation Area on Thursday afternoon, Gavin and Gabby Schwend of Billings were pulling rainbow trout out of one of the stormwater retention ponds.

October 16, 2014 5:20 pm Photos

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Public making their vote count on Highway 3 plans

Public making their vote count on Highway 3 plans

The 30 or so people who attended a meeting Wednesday on proposed improvements to a five-mile stretch of Highway 3 literally held the highway’s future in the palm of their hand.

October 15, 2014 7:45 pm Photos

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