Addressing the Complex Needs of
 Children & Families

From the University of Montana's Center for
Children, Families, and Workforce Development
Issue 13, January 2019
Learning the Montana Legislature
On Jan. 7, 2019, the 66 th session of the Montana legislature convened. Before the session began, legislators had already requested 3,033 bills to be drafted – a record number. Of those, many are related to serving children and families across Montana.

Throughout the session, the Center will track legislation that impacts families and provide regular updates, with a particular focus on evidence-based policymaking. (Learn more about evidence-based policymaking from the Bipartisan Policy Center.) You will be able to find our legislative updates on the Center’s public policy webpage and through the Montana Minute. Specific issues to watch this session are Medicaid expansion, Gov. Steve Bullock’s Pre-K initiative, implementation of the Family First Prevention Services Act and suicide prevention.

As Helena buckles down for the session, here are some resources to make sure you know where to look and who to call during the remaining 80 legislative days:

Montana is one of four states that convenes legislative sessions every other year, on what’s called a biennial basis. Legislators convene during the first week of January every odd-numbered year, when they will decide on their funding and policy priorities.

Each Montanan is directly represented by one representative and one senator. You can contact any state representative by finding their contact information on the Legislator Lookup page on the Montana legislature’s official webpage. You can track bills throughout the session by visiting the official Montana Legislature website, where you can also find committee hearings to attend or watch online and view the legislative calendar. Finally, brush up on all things Montana Legislature with an overview from the Montana Legislative Services Division and stay tuned for another exciting legislative session!

T he University of Montana's Center for Children, Families, and Workforce Development was established in 2015 to partner with the child protection, health, educational, and judicial systems to develop and deliver educational and training resources to professionals and caregivers statewide. The Center also conducts research that focuses on solving problems that impact children and families. The Center receives support from the University of Montana, College of Health Professions and Biomedical Sciences, and School of Social Work. 
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