Montana Governor Gianforte – A Year in Review

HELENA, MT (STL.News) Governor Greg Gianforte began his second year in office as Montana’s 25th governor, following a year defined by lower taxes, less government spending, and more freedom.

In a press conference today at the State Capitol, the governor highlighted key wins and accomplishments from his first year in office.  Excerpts of the governor’s press conference can be found below:

Cutting Taxes

“Working with the legislature, we enacted one of the largest tax cuts in our state’s history, because ultimately, this isn’t the government’s money.  It’s the money of the hardworking Montanans who earn it.  And our tax cut will let Montanans keep more of what they earn, providing $120 million in broad-based tax relief over the next two years.”

Enacting a Responsible, Conservative, Balanced Budget

“We held the line on new general fund spending, limiting its growth to less than one percent per year over the next biennium.  Our Republican budget reduced spending by $145 million compared to the previous administration’s budget proposal.  Our Republican budget had a strong ending fund balance and preserved the state’s rainy day fund.  Like the budgets of hardworking Montana families, our Republican budget is balanced, is conservative, and avoids cuts to essential services.”

Cutting Red Tape

“My first executive order, which I signed on my second day in office, established the Red Tape Relief Task Force, which Lieutenant Governor Kristen Juras leads.  The Task Force is conducting a comprehensive, top-to-bottom review of regulations in every state agency.  They are leaving no stone unturned – from bureaucratic processes to permitting hurdles.  As the lieutenant governor reminds me, there is no quick fix after decades of lip service to red tape relief. Effective, long-term solutions are part of a marathon, not a sprint.  But I can attest Lieutenant Governor Juras is keeping a record-breaking pace to cut back the thicket of unnecessary, burdensome red tape.”

Investing in Our Workforce with Trades Education

“We created the Montana Trades Education Credit which will boost trades education by funding as many as 1,000 trades scholarships each year.  We’re also working with our 2- and 4-year colleges to help Montana businesses meet their workforce needs.”

Investing in Teachers

“We invested in our teachers, making it easier for starting teachers to stay in Montana or come back home.”

Investing in Critical Infrastructure

“We’ve made critical investments to our infrastructure.  We have allocated nearly all the ARPA funds we have received from the federal government, and we will use ARPA funds for responsible, long-term investments to benefit future generations.  We’re investing over $275 million to provide more Montanans access to reliable broadband, and we’re investing nearly $440 million for critical water and sewer infrastructure projects throughout our state.”

Combating the Drug Epidemic

“We took steps to combat the drug epidemic, creating the HEART Fund and Angel Initiative to help folks struggling with addiction get the treatment they need.”

Standing Up Against Federal Overreach

“Heavy-handed, one-size-fits-all mandates don’t work.  It took President Biden almost a year to admit this truth, but COVID cannot be solved by the federal government.  Our course out of this virus doesn’t come from federal mandates.  It will come from people in communities throughout our country exercising personal responsibility and sound judgment. That’s why we’ve stood up against the president’s overreach – against his efforts to mandate vaccination.  Montana law is clear:  no Montanan shall be discriminated against based on his or her vaccination status.  And we will continue to defend the rights of Montanans against the heavy-hand of the federal government.”

Protecting Montanans’ Rights and Freedoms

“We strengthened Montanans’ freedoms – from our First and Second Amendment-protected rights, which do not stop at the doorstep of a college, to our most fundamental right, the right to life.”

Prioritizing Active Forest Management

“Facing a historic drought and fire year, we prioritized aggressive,?initial?attack?against wildfires, and more than doubled the number of acres treated by the state this year.”

The governor’s press conference can be viewed in full here.