February 12, 2021
This week the Chamber issued support for several bills in consideration at the 2021 Legislature. Most of the bills are part of a package of bills put forth by Gov. Greg Gianforte that aim to stimulate the Montana economy and allow Montanans and businesses to keep more of the money they earn.

The Missoula Chamber is also supporting a bill aimed at creating an expedited subdivision review process for municipalities who have zoning and appropriate infrastructure already in place. This has potential to help local builders and developers more quickly address the ever growing need for homes the Missoula workforce can afford.

For a full list of bills the Chamber is currently supporting, check out the list below or visit the Chamber's advocacy page on MissoulaChamber.com. (Link below) From there you can even add your own voice of support to ours and it will be sent directly to your elected representatives in Helena!
Bills we support
  • HB 303 - Business Investment Grows (BIG) Jobs Act – Increases the business equipment tax exemption from the current $100,000 to $200,000.
  • HB 252 - Montana Comeback Trades Education and Training Act – Provides non-refundable tax credit to employers who pay trades education tuition for employees. The credit covers 50% of the cost of the training up to $2,000 per employee with a cap of $25,000 per company.
  • SB 159 - Personal Income Tax Relief Act – Lowers the top personal income tax bracket from 6.9% to 6.75%.
  • SB 182 - Economic Growth Income Tax Rate Trigger Act – Creates a system to automatically lower the top personal income tax bracket if certain economic factors are met each year.
  • SB 184 - Entrepreneur Magnet Act – Exempts the sale of employee-owned stock from capital gains for businesses relocated to, or started in Montana after Jan. 1, 2021.
  • SB 181 - Corporate Tax Modernization Act – Transitions Montana from a 3-factor corporate license tax to a single-factor, sales based system.
  • SB 161 – Expedited review of some subdivisions – Allows for an expedited review of subdivision applications in municipalities with zoning and infrastructure in place.
  • HB 340 - Revisions to the MEDIA Act. Chamber member JPS Real Estate Investment asked the Chamber to support this bill in the legislature that would remove the cap on a film/tv production tax incentive.
  • LC2079 - This bill will create a child care task force at the state level and includes representatives from business as well as two dedicated seats for Chambers of Commerce, one of which will likely to to the Missoula Chamber. This request for support was brought to us by the Funders for Montana's Children, a collaborative partner we have worked with over the past couple years.
Legislature 2021
The 2021 Legislative session kicked off at the beginning of January. As of this writing, there are over 3,000 bill requests submitted. The Chamber's GA Committee is continually monitoring bills and their potential impacts on the Missoula business community. Below is a list of some of the bills currently being monitored. This list changes daily as new bills are introduced.

If you would like the Chamber's Government Affairs committee to discuss a bill introduced during this legislative session, please reach out to Clint Burson, Director of Government Affairs at clintb@missoulachamber.com.
HB 43 - Expanding practice of tele-medicine
HB 103 - Revise cooperative laws to provide for remote participation
HB 112 - Require interscholastic athletes to participate under sex assigned at birth
HB 113 - Provide for youth health protection (This bill was voted down on third reading)
HB 121 - Require elected official approval of local health board and officer actions
HB 137 - Generally revise vaping and alternative nicotine products laws
HB 157 - Generally revise alcohol laws for licensing, brewery shared space
HB 226 - Generally revise alcohol laws to provide for curbside pickup
HB 234 - Remove sunset on requirement that massage therapy businesses display licenses
HB 252 - Non-refundable tax credit for employer-paid education of trade professions
HB 257 - Revise laws relating to government mandates and businesses
HB 259 - Revise property and zoning laws
HB 261 - Constitutional amendment for taxpayer protection act to limit tax types
HB 282 - Revise labor laws relating to the employment of minors
HB 284 - Provide living wage
HB 303 - Revise business equipment tax laws: Business Investment Grows (BIG) Jobs Act
HB 338 - Repeal Class D Motor Carrier Certifications
HB 340 - Revise the MEDIA Act film tax credits
HB 348 - Generally revise film tax credit laws
HB 372 - Eliminate business equipment tax
HB 397 - Establish workforce housing tax credits
SB 91 - Require fiscal notes to include business impact
SB 118 - Revise laws relating to false statements to employers and workers' compensation
SB 142 - Increase the number of children who can be present in day-care homes
SB 161 - Allow certain subdivisions to qualify for an expedited review
SB 181 - Corporate Tax Modernization Act
SB 182 - Generally revise laws on state finance, reducing tax rate if conditions met
SB 184 - Montana Entrepreneur Magnet Act
SB 187 - Increase the minimum wage
SB 207 - Revise alcohol laws pertaining to hours for retail sales
We're here for you
The Government Affairs desk at the Missoula Area Chamber of Commerce is here to help you, our members. Do you have questions you're having trouble finding answers to? We can help you find those answers. Are you running into problems with city, county, state or federal government? Reach out, we'll do our best to help you get past them.

We also welcome suggestions for policy manual updates. If you have an issue you believe is having a big impact on your ability to start or grow your business in Missoula, please let us know.
Thank you to our Visionary Members!