• One of the things that has made me question the claims of global warming is that all of the future predictions from the “experts” regarding its consequences all are dire. I know that that is just never the case. There will always be benefits as well as costs to change, in nature and otherwise. In fact, the age of enlightenment
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  • Billings has been ranked as the third best city in the nation in which to retire by Kiplinger.com. Amazingly, Kiplinger.com ranks the state of Montana as sixth in the “10 Worst States for Taxes on Retirees.”With the city of Naples, Florida ranked at the top, Billings is lauded for its outdoor amenities, health care and no sales tax, while chided
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  • Chris Jessup was recently named manager at the ExxonMobil Billings refinery. He replaces Monica Mainland, who will be transferring to Illinois, where she will become the manager at the ExxonMobil Joliet refinery.
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  • American Exceptionalism.It’s not about politics.It’s not about nationalism.It’s really not even about America.
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  • The Montana Company, Tracer Technology Systems has announced the debut of their product line of Shot Tracer, a Gunshot Detection Sensor system. Investment is offered to the Montana public through the new Montana Crowd Funding Program.
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  • The first time he ever saw a Segway was at Disneyland 16 years ago.“I never thought much about it,” said Spencer Stone. But a few years ago he went on a tour, riding a Segway in San Antonio, “and I just fell in love with it,” Stone continues, about a relatively new mode of transportation that is the object of
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  • Spurred by the success of Halliburton on four Williston Basin test wells, operators are expected to jump on refracing this summer with average costs pegged at $1.5 million a well.“Refracing has gained new life with a whole different aspect,” said Lynn Helms, director of the ND Dept. of Mineral Resources. “Operators will have to make sure that wells alongside (wells
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  • Last week, the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council (SBE Council) published the “Small Business Tax Index 2016: Best to Worst State Tax Systems for Entrepreneurship and Small Business.” The 6th annual study ranks the 50 states according to the costs of their tax systems for entrepreneurship and small business.
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  • MDU Resources Group, Inc. announced last week that its subsidiary, WBI Energy, Inc., has sold Dakota Prairie Refining LLC to Tesoro Refining & Marketing Company LLC, an affiliate of Tesoro Corporation.WBI Energy had been equal partners in building and operating the refinery with Calumet North Dakota LLC, a subsidiary of Calumet Specialty Products Partners LP. To effect the sale of
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  • What’s to happen to the vacant former federal courthouse – the old Battin Building — in downtown Billings? Are there future options for the downtown Billings post office building other than being a post office? Is it possible to extend the lending services of Big Sky Economic Development?These are among some of the issues discussed during the meeting of the
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  • Is a new power plant fired by natural gas in Northwestern Energy’s future in Montana?A very preliminary plan, which the utility is required to develop every two years, projects a natural gas fired plant, producing up to 250 megawatts, as a possible solution to fulfilling the company’s energy needs. The 2015 Electricity Supply Resource Procurement Plan, which was submitted in
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  • Montana has an estimated 508 middle market companies ($10 million-$1 billion in annual revenues), which make up .62% of all firms in the state according to the latest Middle Market Power Index from American Express and Dun & Bradstreet.
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shape upEntries are now being accepted for the 10th Annual Shape Up Montana program, a three-month team-based project of the Big Sky State Games that encourages Montanans to make healthier nutrition choices and be more physically active.

Since it began in 2003, over 43,000 Montanans have logged more than 10 million activity miles and shed 82,948 pounds! Organizers are working to reverse the progression of obesity and overweight trends in Montana.  This year’s program features a new user friendly website.

The early entry deadline is January 24. 

The “Shape Up Montana” program works with the business community, member organizations and families to engage their employees and members in a team format that spurs increasing physical activity and encourages healthy eating habits.  Past Shape Up Montana teams included businesses, church groups, organizations, friends, clubs, school staff and families.

 The team competition offers two categories:

  Accumulated Activity based on logging miles with the aid of an activity conversion calculator and Weight Loss due to healthful eating and physical activity. 

Teams of 4 to 10 individuals work together for three months (February 1 - May 1) helping each other and their team to either log mileage or lose weight.  Mileage is converted from regular daily activities (yard work, housework) and aerobic activity (swimming, running, walking, cycling, etc.). 

The cost for the three-month program is $15 and $10 for employees of Big Sky State Games (BSSG) program sponsors.  Everyone who enters will receive a Shape Up Montana T-shirt, weekly challenges, exercise videos, nutrition and physical activity tips/articles, access to numerous wellness calculators and free entry into the 27th Annual Big State Games Fitness Walk held July 20, in Billings.  Awards will be presented to the top three teams in each division.

Online registration, entry forms and more information are available at www.shapeupmontana.org or call (406) 254-7426.    Entry forms are also available at the Big Sky State Games Office in Billings (490 N. 31st, Suite 200).  

Shape Up Montana is presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana. Community Sponsors include Billings Clinic, Billings Gazette and Montana’s News Station (KTVQ, KBZK, KXLF, KRTV, KXLH, KAJ18, KPAX). 

Contributing partners include Albertsons, Eat Right Montana, Montana Chamber Choices, TwoMedicine, Montana Beef Council and Wendy’s.

The Big Sky State Games’ Major Sponsors are First Interstate Bank, Kampgrounds of America, and Montana Cycling and Ski.


 

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