August 10, 2023
2023 Governors' Cup Golf Tournament Is a Success!
Thank You Gov. Gianforte and Congratulations
Grand Champions & Hole in One Winner
The Montana Chamber Foundation is thrilled to announce the successful conclusion of the 2023 Governors’ Cup Golf Tournament now in its 34th year. Proceeds support the organization’s Youth Entrepreneurs program, an educational curriculum that instills entrepreneurial thinking, basic business economics and workforce readiness skills in students grades 6-12. Montana consistently ranks as one of the top entrepreneurial states in the nation, and the Montana Chamber Foundation works to maintain that top ranking by creating a pipeline of young entrepreneurs.

Following two days of fierce yet friendly play, D.A. Davidson / Montana Accounting Group earned Grand Champions lowest gross score honors having shot a 108. WellSky won the team lowest net category shooting a 93.86. Adding to this year's excitement, Chris O'Boyle of InterBel Telephone Cooperative got a hole in one on Whitefish Lake South #15 and will receive $40,000 towards a vehicle of his choice at Don "K" Dealerships Whitefish. The last tournament to see a hole in one was more than a decade ago.

We wish to thank Gov. Gianforte and Frist Lady Susan for their participation throughout the weekend. We are grateful to all who joined us: sponsors, teams, legislators, guests, board members, staff and volunteers. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you at the 35th Annual event July 25-27, 2024 in the Flathead.
BBER Mid-Year Economic Update Traveled the State;
Talked Economy, Energy and Advocacy
Thanks to all of you who joined us this summer for the Bureau of Business & Economic Research's 2023 Midyear Economic Update in seven Montana cities. We addressed how Montana economy was still roaring ahead over the past two years. At the end of fiscal year 2022, collections from the top seven taxes were up by a stunning 39% from the previous year. But through the first 10 months of this fiscal year, those same taxes produced 3% less. Total wages paid to workers closed out 2022 lower than the end of 2021, even in the high-flying places within the state (Gallatin, Missoula, and Flathead). With the exception of construction and tourism, most of the larger industries in the state went in reverse. And rising interest rates, inflation, high housing prices, and falling global commodity prices continue to shift the sands beneath the foundation of strong growth.

In addition to an in-depth overview of Montana’s economy, we explored the adequacy of Montana’s electricity supply. After decades of being a net exporter of electricity to neighboring states, Montana is becoming a state that imports power more often. On the days and hours when we do import power, we compete in a regional market with some very hungry mouths. States like California, in particular, import more than 25% of the power they use. A potential power crunch in our future puts economic growth in jeopardy.

The positive outcomes for business from the 68th Montana Legislative Session were also detailed along with potential headwinds in the forthcoming 2025 Legislature.
CNBC Broadcasts LIVE from Bozeman with JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon on Four State Expansion Markets Bus Tour
Montana Chamber President & CEO Todd O'Hair, VP, Marketing & Communications Candace Carr Strauss and Cary Hegreberg of Montana Bankers Association spent the afternoon along with other Montana business leaders, legislators and nonprofit partners listening to JPMorgan Chase & Co. CEO Jamie Dimon. Watch the video of his live broadcast on CNBC where he invited the nation to visit Montana to see all the #innovation happening here. The company is expanding into Montana / Wyoming and just celebrated the Bozeman Chase branch opening, its fourth in the state.
AT&T and Human-I-T Provide 100 Laptops to
Local Montana Students
Montana Chamber of Commerce is a Proud Partner
What’s the news? More than 100 refurbished laptops will be given to students and families across Montana as part of AT&T’s nationwide commitment to help bridge the digital divide. The laptops, funded by an AT&T donation to Human IT will be given to 50 local Helena students in need. AT&T is working with Human-I-T and the Montana Chamber of Commerce to provide participants of the Helena Indian Alliance and the Montana Consortium for Urban Indian Health with laptops and digital literacy resources to help them fully participate in our digital world.
Why is this important?
In rural Montana, many students don’t have digital basics at home, including access to the internet, computers or skills needed to benefit from the online world, an issue known as the digital divide. 
Let's All Celebrate the Harvest; To Montana's Agriculture Industry and Its Growers
The Northern Ag Network has been hitting the backroads of Montana ‘For the Farmers’!

The ‘For the Farmers Harvest Tour’ runs from August 1-17, It will visit the communities of Dillon, Conrad, Fairfield, and Lewistown to show appreciation for Montana producers and to celebrate harvest with the goals of highlighting each individual community, the community’s relationship to Montana agriculture, local producers, and other related industry topics.

Listen to Northern News Voices of Montana on event day, in the field where they are dropping off meals to a handful of local producers, or at one of their socials, hosted by Busch Light local distributors.

Visit their events calendar here for details.
Thank you to Brendan Whitworth, CEO of Anheuser-Busch for his recent visit to the Treasure State during harvest. #Agriculture is a leading industry for the state, and we appreciate the company's commitment to our growers.
How are businesses currently doing across the Ninth District, and how do they feel about the near future? Our Regional Outreach team recently surveyed businesses across the Ninth District to gauge current economic activity and the near-term outlook of firms in different sectors. Join Regional Outreach Director Ron Wirtz for a free webinar discussing the latest results from a July survey of firms, and to learn about how businesses are dealing with very challenging conditions.

Survey partners play a crucial role in sharing this survey to businesses across the Federal Reserve's Ninth District. Becoming a partner ensures that more business owners from your local community can share how the economy is affecting them.
This virtual panel will offer insights from some of Montana’s top IT experts on how businesses can be proactive in protecting against cyber threats. Vena Dagnall with the Montana Department of Commerce will make a guest appearance to discuss the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Cybersecurity Program. Montana businesses can receive grants of up to $8,000 for reimbursement of newly implemented cybersecurity measures including firewalls, email protections, data destruction, training, anti-virus software, and more. Don’t miss this free event and a chance to win some cool techy prizes.

Online via Zoom - Link to participate and a recording will be emailed to all registered event attendees.
UM launches new degree, plans to be future ‘cybersecurity headquarters’ in MT
Beginning this fall semester, the University of Montana will offer a bachelor’s degree in cybersecurity aimed at addressing the need. It’s the first in-person, four-year degree of its kind in Montana. The degree is an expansion of previous programs for the university as it expects to be the future “cybersecurity headquarters” in Montana, according to UM Communications Director Dave Kuntz.

In a given year, there are around 650,000 openings across the nation in the cybersecurity field, according to CyberMontana Director Dianne Burke. About each month, Montana has 300 openings, with about half being remote.
IMPORTANT: AS AN EMPLOYER, what you need to know about Medicaid Unwinding
During the pandemic, states did not process eligibility renewals for those enrolled in Medicaid. Here in Montana, that included Medicaid and Healthy Montana Kids. This spring, states were given the green light to restart the eligibility renewal process and as a result, over the next ten months (by January 2024), all 320,000+ Montanans will be reassessed for their Medicaid eligibility and some Montanans will lose Medicaid coverage in that process. They may then be looking to enroll in other health insurance coverage options. Loss of Medicaid or Healthy Montana Kids triggers a special enrollment period, but only for a limited time. Montana businesses can help provide information to their employees about the Medicaid unwinding so that employees who lose Medicaid coverage are able to successfully transition to other health insurance coverage. 

  • If businesses have questions: Your agent or broker can provide information during this process, however Cover Montana can also help give your more information about the Medicaid unwinding process and how to best support employees transitioning their coverage. Employers should contact: Tierney Strandberg, [email protected].

  • If employees have questions and need enrollment help, direct them to:
  • Visit the Cover Montana website,
  • Find free, confidential local enrollment assistance with just a zip code at,
  • Use the Cover Montana free help line for phone or virtual enrollment: (844) 682-6837. 
Medicaid Lunch & Learns are being held weekly on Wednesdays from 12:00 - 12:30 pm.

Email Jackie Jones at [email protected] for the meeting link or call 406.431.9610 with questions.
2024 Governor's Conference on Tourism Announced
50th Anniversary Celebration to be in Missoula
The 2024 Montana Governor's Conference on Tourism will take place in Missoula, at the Hilton Garden from April 14 - 16, 2024. Tourism is a leading industry in Montana, and it's more than just leisure - it's an opportunity! Set your coordinates for Missoula to celebrate the 50th Montana Governor's Conference on Tourism. The event will feature a variety of sessions that will expand and challenge our thinking, provide direction for the future and supply us with new tools to promote and develop our markets and services.

Sponsorship and exhibitor information will be available in early fall.
Early bird registration opens November 1, 2023.

Questions? Contact Public Relations Specialist Alana Cunningham at (406) 841-2781 or [email protected].

SAVE THE DATE: MT Chamber's FY23 Annual Meeting &
"ORO Y PLATA" Business Awards
TUES, OCT 24, 2023
The Northern Hotel downtown Billings
FOR SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES: Contact Stacye Dorrington, Events & Office Manager at [email protected] | 406.439.4220
WED-FRI, MARCH 6-8, 2024
AC Hotel Bozeman Downtown | Kimpton Armory Hotel

EARLY BIRD PRICING until Dec 31, 2023
Full Conference Registration: $395 / pp
IWD Power Lunch Ticket: $125 / pp

Proceeds to fund MT Chamber's childcare policy initiatives in the 2025 Legislature
FOR SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES: Contact Candace Carr Strauss, VP, Marketing & Communications at [email protected] | 406.640.1331
WGA calls on Senate to reform environmental review process for energy projects...Read here.

Billings Clinic and Logan Health announce merger...Read here.

Missoula Airport Sets Passenger Records in June...Read here.

Montana Enacts Strong Reforms—Now, It’s Time for Sound Property Tax Relief
...Read here.