New & Noteworthy:


Montana is the 41st U.S. state, admitted to the Union on Nov. 8, 1889. Its most populous city is Billings, and the state capitol is located in Helena.

LGBT Rights in Montana: A constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions was approved by voters in November 2004. No provision of Montana law addresses discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation or gender identity. Montana's hate crimes statute does not cover violence based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Montana permits adoption by individuals, and there are no explicit prohibitions on adoption by same-sex couples or on second-parent adoption by a person of the same sex as the first parent.

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Montana High School Association shelves proposed policy for transgender athletes

Friday, January 16, 2015
The decision to withdraw the proposal came after the four executive board members determined there is insufficient support among the association's member schools. [...]

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Montana high school association to vote on policy for transgender student athletes

Sunday, January 11, 2015
The proposed policy would enable transgender teens to compete in high school athletics based on their gender identity. [...]

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Ninth Circuit sets schedule for Montana AG’s appeal of gay marriage ruling

Saturday, November 22, 2014
Attorney General Tim Fox (R-Mont.)
BILLINGS, Mont. -- Opening arguments from Montana's attorney general are due Feb. 27 in his appeal of a federal court order that struck down the state's same-sex marriage ban. Attorney General Tim Fox has said it's his sworn duty to uphold Montana's Constitution, which voters amended in 2004 ... [...]

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Some Mont. clerks won’t issue same-sex marriage licenses for religious reasons

Friday, November 21, 2014
Ted Ribey with the Clerk of District Court's office in Yellowstone County attaches a seal to the wedding license of Jill Houk and Randi Paul, Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, in Billings, Mont. At least 5 other clerks in the county are refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
BILLINGS, Mont. -- A few county clerks in Montana's Yellowstone County are refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples, citing their religious opposition to same-sex marriage. [...]

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Montana same-sex couples exchange vows after gay marriage ban tossed

Thursday, November 20, 2014
Ben Bahnsen, left, puts a wedding ring on husband, Patrick Donnelly, as Unitarian minister Nina Grey officiates their marriage on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, at the Gallatin County Law and Justice Center in Bozeman, Mont.
BILLINGS, Mont. -- Gay couples are lining up for marriage licenses at county courthouses across Montana on Thursday, a day after a federal judge tossed out the state's ban on same-sex marriage. At least two counties - Missoula and Park - started issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples Wednesday, while [...]

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Federal judge strikes down Montana same-sex marriage ban

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
J. Stephen Conn
GREAT FALLS, Mont. -- A federal judge in Montana has struck down that state's same-sex marriage ban. The ruling by U.S. District Judge Brian Morris comes in a challenge filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Montana on behalf of four same-sex couples who sued to overturn the ban. [...]

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Judge in Montana to rule on same-sex marriage ban without formal hearing

Friday, November 14, 2014
GREAT FALLS, Mont. -- A federal judge has vacated a hearing scheduled for next week in Great Falls to hear arguments in a lawsuit challenging Montana's ban on same-sex marriage. [...]

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Three states continue to deny same-sex marriage despite appellate court rulings

Thursday, October 23, 2014
In this July 1, 2013 file photo, Rick Nelson Flor, right, holds a flower bouquet as he stands next to his partner Robert O'Rourke before their wedding ceremony in West Hollywood, Calif.
WASHINGTON -- Three states are continuing their legal fight against same-sex marriage, despite rulings from federal appeals courts that oversee those states that concluded gay and lesbian couples have the right to marry. Even as officials in other states have abandoned defense of gay marriage bans, Kansas, Montana and South [...]

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Judge sets November hearing in challenge to Montana gay marriage ban

Tuesday, October 21, 2014
HELENA, Mont. -- A judge has set a Nov. 20 hearing in Great Falls for arguments in a lawsuit challenging Montana's ban on gay marriage. U.S. District Judge Brian Morris scheduled the hearing Monday after four gay couples filed a motion for summary judgment that asks the judge to decide [...]

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Federal judge asked to rule on Montana’s same-sex marriage ban

Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Jimmy Emerson
HELENA, Mont. -- Four couples challenging Montana's ban on same-sex marriages have asked a federal judge to decide the issue without going to trial. The couples, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, filed the request Wednesday. [...]

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