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UPOM Releases 2019 Legislative Scorecard

The analysis includes a summary of the legislative efforts impacting property rights throughout the session and recognizes those elected officials who went above and beyond in working to protect private property rights.

“Overall it was a positive session for property owners,” remarked UPOM Policy Director, Chuck Denowh. “We saw fewer overall attacks on individual property rights and we were able to successfully kill the bad bills that were introduce. The most significant win this session was the passage of House Joint Resolution 28 asking the BLM to deny the American Prairie Reserve’s application to change the grazing permits on 13 allotments in central Montana.”

HJ 28 was a key piece of legislation that aims to prevent the APR from gaining ground in their pursuit to establish a free-roaming bison herd. HJ 28 has already made a difference and is making waves in D.C. Shortly after the session, HJ 28 sponsors, Rep. Dan Bartel and Sen. Mike Lang were invited to share the resolution, and their concerns about the APR, with Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt. UPOM also hand delivered a copy of the resolution passed by the legislature to the acting Director of the BLM.

“Montana’s land owners, farmers, and ranchers are at a critical juncture,” said Denowh. “APR’s agenda is a direct threat to the future of Montana agriculture and our public lands. They’ve made it clear they want to eliminate entire communities and replace the ag economy with eco-tourism.”

The scorecard also recognizes several “Property Rights Champions” who either sponsored legislation protecting property rights, scored over 100% of the UPOM legislative scorecard, or have proven to be strong advocates for property rights over their tenure in the Montana State Legislature.

This session, UPOM’s Property Rights Champions were Rep. Dan Bartel of Lewistown, Rep. Wylie Galt of Martinsdale, Rep. Alan Redfield of Livingston, Sen. Mike Lang of Malta, Rep. Joshua Kassmier of Fort Benton, and Rep. Bradley Hamlett of Cascade.

The scorecard can be downloaded here.