Serving her second term in the Montana House, Representative Virginia Court is using her 25 years of experience as a small business owner to invigorate Montana’s economy and keep it on track.
Representative Court knows what it takes to run a successful small business, and she knows what it takes to ensure that our economy is healthy and robust. She also knows that the two aren’t mutually exclusive; employing a majority of Montanans, small business serve as the backbone of our state’s economy by creating well paying jobs and supporting Montana communities.
Dedicated to putting Montana families and small businesses first, Rep. Court describes the necessity of having a business-savvy point of view at the Montana Legislature on her official website:
“I started and operated a successful small business in Montana for 25 years. I know firsthand what it takes to keep this vital segment of our economy strong and growing. ”
On top of being a champion for small businesses, Rep. Court stands up for public education, good government, and conservation. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Montana State University which she uses to stand up for preserving our outdoor heritage and protecting the Montana we love.
Clean air and water allows Montanans to enjoy a high quality of life, and Rep. Court is making sure that lifestyle isn’t threatened. After working as a Park Naturalist for Yellowstone National Park, she understands the need to conserve and use our resources wisely and make sure that public lands are accessible to the public.
Thankful for the opportunity to represent Montanans in the State Legislature, Rep. Court is leading with hard work and responsibility. She is using her skills and experience to make the tough decisions, and work for commonsense solutions to the challenges facing our state.
Written by MDLCC Legislative Assistant Cassie Hintz
The 63rd Montana legislature has concluded, marking the end of a wild ride. There were some bumps along the road, including epic fights between Tea Party and moderate Republicans.
But at the end of the day, Democratic legislators were able to make progress on the issues that matter most to Montana.
Democrats from the beginning said that they came to Helena with the intention of working across party lines to pass legislation that would benefit veterans, small business, and families all across Montana.
And that’s exactly what they did, working together with some members on the other side of the aisle to pass legislation that reflects Montana values.
More from the The Billings Gazette:
“I really do think it’s the product of a lot of hard work, not only between both sides of the aisle, but also with the executive branch,” said Rep. Galen Hollenbaugh, D-Helena.
“By staying at the table and negotiating, we were able to find our way through a very long budget process. This house … has been the rock of showing folks how you can affect public policy, by talking with each other, by staying at the table.”
Since the beginning, the extremist leaders of the Republican legislature made it clear through leaked emails that their intention was to pass an out-of-touch agenda that puts special interests ahead of Montana’s best interests.
Democrats were able to find some partners on the other side of the aisle who had enough of the dark money-driven agenda the Republican leaders tried to impose on the legislature. Together, they delivered results for the people of Montana, including,
Bills that revise Montana’s state income tax, reduce property taxes for businesses, create a new $35 million fund for infrastructure projects in areas impacted by the oil-and-gas boom along the Montana-North Dakota border and fix the pension fund for teachers
Montana deserves a Legislative body that will pass laws that represent their values: less money in politics, taking care of veterans and workers who dedicate their careers to bettering the state of Montana, maintaining a healthy economic climate for small businesses, fund Montana’s premier public education system, and always putt Montana families first.
Those are the values Democratic legislators brought to the capitol, and they’re the same values they’ll bring to the campaign trail next year. Be sure to stay in touch, so you can help us elect candidates who will always put Montana first.
Senator Shannon Augare is a hardworking community leader from Browning with a history of public service and dedication to economic development and Montana values.
A member of the Native American Caucus, Senator Augare has taken on leadership roles at the legislature and on the Blackfeet reservation for a number of years. He uses his role at the legislature to deliver commonsense solutions for American Indian communities, and all Montanans.
Representative Augare looks out for Montana’s best interest by promoting clean energy in Montana. This type of responsible and forward thinking action protects Montana’s land and preserves it for future generations.
Emphasizing teamwork and cooperation, Representative Augare garnered the respect of elected officials and citizens across the spectrum. Emphasizing community development, he strives to put Montana interests ahead of party interests; getting the job done by working with whomever it takes.
Representative Augare has earned a national reputation for his work for rural-America. Along with extensive experience in this field, Representative Augare’s creation of green-jobs provides Montana with more job opportunities. This work not only benefits the environment, but also supports the Montana economy. A strong economy means more jobs and economic opportunities for all families.
With optimism and plans for the future, Representative Augare has traveled to all 50 states to meet with state officials, spreading hope for productive growth in rural-America and Native Americans.
Augare strives to promote equality in opportunities and find bipartisan solutions that include every Montanan. He knows how to work on both sides of the aisle to achieve results for everyone, and is determined to make progress for our state.
More on Augare from Center for Community Economic Development
Written by MDLCC High School Intern Bailey Clark
Representative Kathleen Williams is a second term Democrat using 25 years of experience working for the forest service and state government, and a Masters Degree in Recreational Resources, to fight at the Montana Capitol for policies that contribute to a healthy economy and protect the Montana we love.
With experiences in natural resources, economics, government, non-profit management, community planning, and running a small business, Rep. Williams has built the skills necessary to lead Montana with honor and dignity. She is a proven problem solver, and is ready to negotiate for informed and responsible solutions to Montana’s problems. She talks about the importance of working together in an interview with the Bozeman Daily Chronicle:
“I believe the most successful way to increase the integrity and function of the Legislature is to put policy above partisanship, treat all participants as colleagues, focus on the issues most relevant to the state, be informed, work to find solutions and help others do so, and lead by example.”
Rep. Williams is dedicated to addressing the concerns and needs of the Montanans she represents, and takes the time to listen to their needs. She is very accessible, and encourages her constituents to share their ideas and opinions, so that she can most accurately represent them.
Shaping her legislative priorities around the concerns of her district as she hears from them, Rep. Williams is working for a healthy sense of community, a strong and diverse economy, a quality and accessible public education system, affordable and quality healthcare, a balanced budget, and clean air and water and access to rivers and streams.
After working hard to build relationships within the legislature and around the state, Rep. Williams is serving Montanans with commonsense and efficiency. Valuing hard work and collaboration over party politics and out-of-state interests, she puts the people first in everything she does, and makes sure that everyone gets a seat at the table when decisions are made for Montana.
Written by MDLCC Legislative Assistant Cassie Hintz