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Burton K. Wheeler Center at Montana State University Conference: Can the Legislature be fixed?

October 2, 2007View for printing

A contentious and divided Legislature that limped through a historic and bitter collapse can be fixed, leading lawmakers meeting here Monday were told.

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The Burton K. Wheeler Center http://www.montana.edu/wheeler/ conference continues Tuesday, with current legislative leaders talking about ways to move forward.

By MATT GOURAS Associated Press Writer

Full Story: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories ... style4.html

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Leaders look at ways to improve Legislature

By CHARLES S. JOHNSON - IR State Bureau

Speakers Monday prescribed a host of remedies — particularly ending or extending term limits for lawmakers — to fix a rancorous Montana Legislature that bitterly adjourned in April without completing its work.

Other speakers at the two-day conference sponsored by the Burton K. Wheeler Center at Montana State University suggested if legislators met for shorter periods annually, instead of one 90-minute session every other year, they might learn to get along better with each other.

Full Story: http://helenair.com/articles/2007/10 ... 1002_02.txt

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Can the Legislature be fixed?

On the heels of a 2007 legislation session marked by political hardball, name calling and an inability to approve a budget within the allotted 90 days, 73 percent of Montanans polled gave the Legislature a negative job rating — despite the fact that they liked most of what had been accomplished.

That irony wasn’t lost on the Burton K. Wheeler Center at MSU, which sponsored a two-day conference this week on how the legislative process might be improved.

Among the ideas discussed, two stood out: ending or extending term limits, and moving the session farther away from the election. Each suggestion has its problems.

Full Story: http://helenair.com/articles/2007/10 ... 1003_01.txt
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