LightStream Pledges to Join World Economic Forum’s Trillion Tree Movement, Planting 1 Million Trees in America’s Forests by 2022 | State / Regional

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina, July 21, 2021 / PRNewswire / – LightStream today announced its commitment to grow one million trees by 2022 in partnership with American Forests. The promise was made to the US section of, an initiative co-led by American Forests and the World Economic Forum, in support of the global effort to conserve, restore and grow 1,000 billion trees around the world by 2030.

“The The US Chapter is delighted to receive LightStream’s commitment to grow 1 million trees by 2022, in partnership with American Forests, ”said Justin adams, Director of Nature-Based Solutions, World Economic Forum, “It’s wonderful to see LightStreamthe ambitious commitment of and hopes it will inspire other companies to join the global movement to accelerate nature-based solutions and invest in our forests. “

LightStream has partnered with American Forests on forest restoration initiatives since the company’s launch in 2013. Every time LightStream funds a loan, it donates to American Forests to plant a tree on behalf of the client.

“It has been said that ‘we don’t inherit the land from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children,'” said Kristin Shuff, senior vice president of LightStream. “And when we borrow, whether it’s taking out a loan to achieve a goal or tapping into the beautiful but fragile natural resources of our planet, we have an obligation to repay our debt. LightStream understands the importance of borrowing responsibly, both financially and environmentally. It’s part of our duty to future generations, and we believe it’s also one of the things that made us the nation’s leading online consumer lender. “

Through its partnership with American Forests, LightStream has developed its reforestation efforts from a single post-wildlife recovery project in Montana to various restoration projects in several cities and states across United States. As part of their commitment to The US chapter, LightStream will leverage climate-smart reforestation and management techniques provided by American Forests, including:

  • Plant genetically diverse collections of native species
  • Plant trees more apt to thrive in future climatic conditions
  • Screening seedlings for disease resistance
  • Space seedlings to mimic natural tree regrowth after a forest fire and reduce the risk of future fires.
  • Plant seedlings in plastic shelter tubes which greatly increase plant survival in drought prone areas

“The climate crisis is not slowing down, but luckily those of us are also not committed to forests as natural climate solutions,” said Jad daley, President and CEO of American Forests. “With this commitment, LightStream will accelerate its reforestation efforts, using the latest climate-conscious forest management guidelines from American Forests. We are very pleased to welcome them to the team.”

Shuff continues, “Our partnership with American Forests aligns with the culture and purpose of LightStream. It reflects our commitment to reforest America’s wild and wildlife areas, while now expanding to support the World Economic Forum’s Trillion Tree movement to restore the health and well-being of the planet for all.

About American Forests

American Forests is the first national non-profit conservation organization established in the United States. Since its founding in 1875, the organization has been at the forefront of the forest conservation movement. Its mission is to create healthy and resilient forests, from cities to wilderness, that provide essential benefits for climate, people, water and wildlife. The organization advances its mission through forestry innovation, local partnerships to plant and restore forests, and movement building.

The LightStream / American Forests partnership began as a way to celebrate LightStream’s paperless lending process. Over the years, it has grown into an eco-movement that goes beyond tree planting and preservation activities. LightStream also supports American Forests’ education and research efforts to raise awareness and educate people about the value of trees. You can find more information about the partnership between American Forests and LightStream at

About the World Economic Forum

The World Economic Forum, committed to improving the state of the world, is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages society’s key political, business and other leaders in shaping global, regional and industry agendas.

About LightStream

LightStream is a national online lending division of SunTrust l Now Truist. Through a simple online process, LightStream provides unsecured loans up to $ 100,000 to good credit customers for virtually any purpose. Funds with very competitive interest rates can be provided from the same day an application is submitted and free of charge. (Click on here for more information on Same Day Funding) Funding is available in all 50 states, plus Washington DC and Puerto Rico. Visit for more information.

About Truist

Truist Financial Corporation is a purpose-built financial services company committed to inspiring and building better lives and communities. Formed by the historic merger of BB&T and SunTrust equals, Truist has a leading market share in many high growth markets across the country. The company offers a wide range of services, including retail, small business and corporate banking; asset Management; capital markets; commercial real estate; corporate and institutional banking; Insurance; mortgage; Payments; specialized loans; and wealth management. Based at Charlotte, North Carolina, Truist is one of the top 10 U.S. commercial banks with total assets of $ 522 billion from June 30, 2021. Truist Bank, FDIC member. Learn more about

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SOURCE Truist Financial Corporation

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Montana drops “bad actor” case against Hecla Mining Co.

Montana’s Environmental Quality Department drops its lawsuit against a northern Idaho-based company seeking to develop two large silver and copper mines in northwestern Montana.

The ruling prompted conservation groups involved in the case to allege political interference from Republican Governor Greg Gianforte, who promoted the projects during the election campaign. Administration officials rejected the claim.

Coeur d’Alene-based Hecla Mining Co. filed a lawsuit in March 2018 after the DEQ attempted to label the company’s chief executive, Phillips Baker Jr., a “bad actor” under Montana’s Metal Mine Reclamation Act. The law was designed to prevent individuals and businesses who do not clean up their old mines from starting new ones.

The department – under the then government. Steve Bullock, a Democrat – sued, claiming Baker and Hecla should not get permits for the proposed mines in Lincoln and Sanders counties due to Baker’s past involvement with Pegasus Gold Corp.

Pegasus went bankrupt in 1998, abandoning three mines in the Little Rocky Mountains south of the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation and leaving taxpayers at the mercy of tens of millions of dollars in reclamation and wastewater treatment efforts. continue to this day.

Lewis and Clark County District Court Judge Mike Menahan awarded the state a victory in May, ruling that the DEQ has the power to apply the “bad actor” label to Baker and to other actors outside the state, although the decision did not address the substance. of the case.

WEDNESDAY, the department filed a motion to dismiss the case, citing what it called “a number of factors, including complex procedural hurdles that complicate the case and potentially risk DEQ’s ultimate goal of prevent bad actors from operating in Montana “.

DEQ director Chris Dorrington, appointed by Gianforte, added that the case seemed “very unlikely” that it would result in reimbursement for the cleanup of the old Pegasus mines by Hecla or Baker, who was vice president of Pegasus before. its bankruptcy.

“When deciding whether to pursue this matter, DEQ must consider all demands for time and demands on our resources, as well as any potential environmental benefits or consequences,” Dorrington told Daily Inter Lake in an interview. Thursday.

A coalition of tribal and environmental groups blasted the agency’s decision, saying the state wasted an opportunity to hold mining leaders to account and prevent further pollution.

“By dropping this case, DEQ is stepping away from its only real chance of defending the Montanais against millions of dollars in taxpayer dollars by Baker and Pegasus,” David Brooks, executive director of Montana Trout Unlimited, said in a statement. . “The Bad Actors Act is meant to be a deterrent, not just a punishment.”

Andy Werk, president of the Indian community of Fort Belknap, said the DEQ’s decision would perpetuate “the devastating burden of environmental injustice.”

“The state of Montana must make it a priority to protect the health of Montana communities, including the Aaniiih and Nakoda tribes of the Fort Belknap Indian community, and to protect the natural resources that support all life,” he said. Werk said in a statement. “The rejection of the coercive measure by DEQ goes against this responsibility and gives priority to the mining leaders rather than the Montanais.

The groups said the state spent more than $ 50 million to clean up acidic mine waste from the soil and water at the Zortman-Landusky mine alone. Pegasus also operated the former gold mines of Beal Mountain and Basin Creek in the Lesser Rocky Mountains.

Luke Russell, spokesperson and vice chairman of Hecla, said the state’s case was “unsuccessful” because the company had no involvement in the old Pegasus mines. Hecla previously said Baker left Pegasus before going bankrupt.

“Mr. Baker is not a bad actor under Montana law,” Russell said. “His job with Pegasus over 20 years ago was the sole basis for carrying this business.”

The DEQ noted that the three mines involved in this case – the Rock Creek, Montanore and Troy mines – all comply with the Metal Mine Reclamation Act. The Troy mine is undergoing final reclamation and the two proposed mines are subject to an environmental review, engineering assessment and public comment before receiving permits, the agency said.

“These projects should therefore succeed or fail individually on their own merit through the authorization processes, where DEQ can thoroughly examine all the relevant scientific and technical details and public comments before deciding whether each should proceed,” said the department in its motion to reject. .

Derf Johnson, who heads the nonprofit Montana Environmental Information Center’s drinking water program, said the authorization process was irrelevant and the DEQ should have pursued its claim under the Bad Law. actors.

“What good are laws if they are not actually enforced? And what message does this send to currently operating mines if, through political persuasion, they can ignore and circumvent Montana’s bad actor law? Johnson said.

MONTANA IS one of the many states with bad actor statutes that allow state environmental agencies to take a company’s or individual’s environmental record into account when deciding whether to grant permits.

The Montana legislature passed the law in 1989 and expanded it in 2001 to apply to business executives. It has already been applied once, in 2008, in a case that did not involve a major project like the ones Hecla is pursuing at the Rock Creek mine near Noxon and at the Montanore mine near Libby, according to officials from the ‘State. Both projects have been underway for decades.

The two copper and silver mines would tunnel under the Cabinet Mountains Wilderness. They have been at a standstill for years as environmentalists have repeatedly sued over concerns that the mines are harming the area’s rivers and wildlife, including bull trout and grizzly bears.

During a July 2020 campaign event at Hecla’s offices in Libby, Gianforte called the DEQ and the state’s natural resources and conservation department “project prevention departments,” criticizing the weather. that it took to get permits for the Rock Creek and Montanore mines, the Montana Free Press reported. (State and federal agencies have issued permits for the mines, but they have been successfully challenged in court on several occasions.)

“I don’t think we should approve all the permits, but we should be able to get a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ in less than 35 years,” Gianforte said at the time.

Johnson, of the Montana Environmental Information Center, said: “Clearly this is a very political decision. Clearly this is a policy change on the part of the governor’s office.

Dorrington, the director of DEQ, and Gianforte spokeswoman Brooke Stroyke, said the governor had not advocated for the prosecution to be withdrawn.

“As with matters relating to the protection of the Montana environment and Montana taxpayers, the governor has assigned and empowered DEQ to take whatever action the agency considers most appropriate,” Stroyke said in an email. .

Dorrington reiterated this point, almost verbatim, during Thursday’s phone call.

“The governor relied on us to make these decisions,” he added.

While environmentalists fear the proposed mines will cause permanent damage to the federally protected nature of the Cabinet Mountains, mining executives note that copper and silver are needed for the production of electric vehicles, wind turbines and other components of an environmentally friendly economy.

“We look forward to moving these projects forward,” said Russell, spokesperson for Hecla. “They are important for clean energy, they can be done responsibly, and they will have a huge economic impact on Northwest Montana.”

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Stone-Manning may have broken ethics rules, federal law with 2008 personal loan reviewed

President Biden’s The candidate for the head of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) appears to have broken Senate ethics rules and federal law during her tenure as a member of Congress.

Tracy Stone-Manning has come under scrutiny for her connection to Earth First! eco-terrorist tree-planting plot, but she also took out a $ 100,000 business loan from a friend while employed by Senator Jon Tester, D-Mont.

According to her written responses to the committee’s questions following her hearing last month, Stone-Manning received the loan for her business DB Sound LLC, which her husband “managed,” from Stuart Goldberg, a wealthy Montana developer and donor. de Tester, in 2008 to help his company in difficulty after the stock market crash.


The loan was accepted at an interest rate of “6%” – well below the market interest rate of about 11% at the time, according to Federal Reserve Economic Data – with a term of “12 years”.

After his business closed and his family downsized in 2009, Stone-Manning converted the remaining $ 60,000 from Goldberg’s business loan into a personal loan, “paying it back in full in 2020.”

However, Stone-Manning also admitted in her responses that she did not consult the Senate Ethics Committee about the loan – a Senate ethics rule and a requirement of federal law.

According to Rules of ethics of the Senate and federal law, Senate employees can receive gifts from friends up to a value of $ 250. Anything over the amount must be disclosed to the Senate Ethics Committee and receive a written exemption from the staff member accepting the gift rule.

Stone-Manning wrote in her responses that she did not consult the Senate Ethics Committee about the loan and that she did not disclose the loan to the committee in the first place, saying she “did not consider not the loan to the company as a gift. “

Senate rules and federal law consider a loan to be a “gift,” with the exception of commercially available loans.

Federal law provides that loans are exempted when they are “made in a commercially reasonable manner (including the requirement that the loan be repaid and a reasonable rate of interest paid)”.


The exception to Senate rules states that loans are exempt if they originate “from banks and other financial institutions on terms generally available to the public.”

This means Stone-Manning appears to have broken both federal law and 2008 Senate ethics rules until she left Tester’s staff in 2012.

In addition to the $ 100,000 loan, as DB Sound closed and engaged in a “move sale,” according to newspaper ads and files obtained by Fox News, Goldberg bought “thousands of dollars” from equipment to DB Sound at wholesale price after loan. .

Goldberg’s purchases could also have been a “giveaway” requiring committee disclosure, as the purchases could have given Stone-Manning a monetary value greater than $ 250.

Senator Roger Marshall, R-Kan., Who called Stone-Manning for the loan during his nomination hearing, torched the BLM candidate for the payment and his ties to Earth First !.

“Tracy Stone-Manning lied to the committee about her involvement with eco-terrorists. She also appears to have violated Senate ethics rules and possibly broken federal law by accepting a questionable loan of $ 100,000,” he said. Marshall told Fox News in an email Tuesday.

“President Biden should immediately withdraw her nomination and nominate a candidate without a history of financial disputes and eco-terrorism allegations,” he added.


Stone-Manning has yet to produce written documentation on the loan, its terms, payment schedule, and other relevant documents.

The White House did not respond to Fox News’ request for comment on the loan and whether ethical issues surrounding the loan could impact her transparency as director of BLM.

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Anthony Assi joins NMB to launch FasterFi, a new digital lending platform

“I am thrilled to join the NMB team in making FasterFi the go-to digital lending platform for consumers looking for transparency, speed and a reward for their financial diligence. ” Anthony states,FasterFi offers those looking to secure real estate financing online a solution that doesn’t get bogged down by old industry conventions or outdated technology. “

Antoine Assi is recognized in the digital mortgage industry as a first originator and thought leader. With a focus on technology-driven lending and over 12 years of mortgage banking experience; Assi brings a new approach to service for the modern consumer. Thanks to its efforts, Assi not only ranked among the country’s top loan originators by volume, it also ranked 8th in the Scotsman Guide’s 2021 US Refinancing Production Volume Report. While hitting record numbers just a year ago, Anthony and NMB have even bigger plans for the future with FasterFi.

“Anthony funded over five hundred sixty million dollars in volume of loans in 2020 with average loans closed in less than two weeks ”, declares NMB CPO, Robert jayne, “He has the energy and skills to make a successful launch and beyond. FasterFi exists to enable qualified consumers to return home financially. With Anthony on the team, we know borrowers who take advantage of all that FasterFi has to offer will love their experience. “

About FasterFi and NMB

FasterFi is a technology-driven, consumer-driven lending platform that empowers qualified buyers to get the best rates through a streamlined online experience. Its mission is to be the premier online resource for mortgages, credit, and financial wellness. FasterFi is backed by Nationwide Mortgage Bankers “NMB”, America’s fastest growing mortgage company.

NMB was born with the vision of demystifying mortgages through transparency, education and customer support. Their mission is to be the trusted advisers of our clients and benchmark partners, guiding them throughout the real estate financing process with the highest level of service and professionalism.

FasterFi ( is a registered DBA of Nationwide Mortgage Bankers, Inc 68 S Service Rd Suite 400, Melville, New York State 11747 (“NMB”). NMB is in no way affiliated with the “National Mutual Insurance Company”. NMB is registered with the National Mortgage Licensing System NMLS # 819382. HUD Approved Title II Supervised Lender # 3113200005. Nationwide does not act on behalf of or under the direction of HUD / FHA or the federal government. All loans are subject to credit approval and appraisal. The program, prices, terms and conditions are subject to change without notice. This is not a loan commitment.

FasterFi ( is an approved dba of Nationwide Mortgage Bankers, Inc. only in the following states: Alabama/Colorado/Connecticut/Delaware/District of Colombia/ Florida /Georgia/Illinois/Kansas/Kentucky/Minnesota/Mississippi/Montana/New Hampshire/New Mexico/North Carolina/Ohio/Oregon/Pennsylvania/Caroline from the south/South Dakota/Texas/Wisconsin.

Nationwide Mortgage Bankers
Jarrett stanley
Executive Vice President, Marketing
[email protected]

SOURCE Nationwide Mortgage Bankers (NMB)

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“Disaster capitalism” is as old as capitalism itself – The Connecticut Examiner

The idea that crises can be used to disorient, manipulate history, and cultivate societal change is nothing new. “Catastrophe capitalism” is as old as capitalism itself. Baron Rothschild, 18 years olde British nobleman of the century whose banking family loaned money (at huge interest) to warring factions, including the Lincoln Feds and the Davis Confederacy, put it bluntly. “Time to buy,” he said. “It’s when there is blood on the streets.” Taking the same thief baron approach, Wall Street, CEOs, and American industrialists routinely hedge the bets by investing in crises and exploiting desperation. In his last presidential address, Dwight Eisenhower warned of the military-industrial-political complex and the risks of tying economic incentives to perpetual war and global instability. Sixty years later, spending more on militarism than the next nine nations combined is still the US status quo. Big Pharma is gorging itself on preventable disease, profiting from diabetes and cancer, obesity, high blood pressure and the spread of COVID and flu and vaccine showers. As we allow widespread misinformation, tweak our thumbs on climate change and travel needlessly, the mere suggestion of bad news drives up the prices of oil and others.

The most revealing of Naomi Klein’s “shock doctrine” is its transition between the economic ideologies of Milton Friedman and the end of the 20th century.e the opportunism of the century and the syndications of power brokers. Libertarians, business leaders and political elites are lining up in multinational cartels to promote their individual wealth and private interests at the expense of the state. America’s business models and financial sectors base their quarterly profits on the exploitation and prolongation of crises, ravaging the biosphere and inflexible mythological enemies. Anyone seen as a threat to these dividends, globally or nationally, is called an enemy. Permanent markets require permanent conflicts and crises. So, as long as terrorists are seen as pervasive and unreasonable, wars can go on forever. If protecting tropical rainforests and other ecosystems, the diversity of species and natural resources is antithetical to the accumulation of wealth, the finite is presented as unlimited. The American economy is based on endless wars with life itself, and at the national level, as each successive act of violence produces backlash, calls for “strong men”, militarization and destruction. “Law and order” is home to police states.

Fox News and radical right-wing Trump sect repeat talking points to brainwash sidekicks by making them think of the southern border, big lies of voter fraud and gunshots in cities will tip the 2022 election Historically, however, immigration reform, xenophobia, and street violence have been a constant in America. What changes the situation is global warming which, thanks to 40 years of procrastination, remains frozen, deteriorating infrastructure. Eighty-three percent of the west is in severe drought; a million acres burned from LA to Montana last week; record high temperatures killed hundreds in the Northwest and across Canada; and Connecticut is having one of its wettest and most crop-flooded Julys. Anthropogenic climate change is also contributing to mass extinctions around the world. Meanwhile, U.S. collective immunity to SARS-CoV-2 has stalled. Politically motivated resistance to COVID injections and the wearing of masks, combined with the resurgence of indoor / outdoor activities and other relaxed restrictions, are leading to an increase in delta-variant infections, hospitalizations and deaths.

Other mandates are clear. Before 2022, the Biden administration, in addition to fighting against voter suppression, is expected to crack down on militia groups, dangerously branding crime, insurgency and homicidal overthrow as patriotism. The recruitment of former members of the police and military for delusional acts of terrorism and betrayal must stop. In addition, parents’ careers and childhood development cannot be optimized at the same time as stimulating the economy. With 1 million neural connections forming every second of an infant’s first year, it’s time for a resurgence of competent employer- or government-run child care centers like the ones that operated (≥ 3,100) during WWII .

Scott Deshefy is a biologist, environmentalist and two-time Green Party congressional candidate.

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Montana Boomtown Moves to # 1 in WSJ Housing Market Index /

Billings, Mont., Is the new number 1 in the Wall Street Journal / Emerging Housing Markets Index, bolstered by its accessibility and appeal to remote workers.

The index reflects how the real estate boom sparked home buying activity in small and mid-sized US cities. The top 20 cities in the ranking have an average population of just over 300,000 inhabitants.

In the latest ranking of the index released Tuesday, small towns dominate. Metropolitan area # 2 is Coeur d’Alene, the lakeside town in Idaho that held # 1 when the index was created in April. Fort Wayne, Indiana, Rapid City, SD, and Raleigh, NC round out the top 5.

The index identifies major metropolitan areas for home buyers looking for an appreciating housing market and attractive lifestyle amenities. This quarter’s version added the new property tax criteria, which caused some areas in the Northeast, Midwest and Texas with higher property taxes to drop in rankings.

Billings is the largest city in Montana, with a metro area population of approximately 184,000.

The strengthening of the US economy also played a role, rewarding cities where jobs and wages have increased the most. Rapid City and Raleigh each jumped about 100 spots from the previous quarter.

Billings, Montana’s largest city, fell from fourth to first due to its low unemployment rate, affordability, and booming housing market. With a metro area population of around 184,000, Billings had an unemployment rate of 3% in May, about half the national rate.

Much of the strength of the Billings housing market is due to out-of-state buyers, from coastal states like California and Washington to Kentucky and Texas, said Deb Parker, broker-owner of Parker & Co. Real Estate Services in Billings. Many are moving to the area because they have the option to work remotely, she said.

“I believe Montana has really been discovered,” Ms. Parker said. “I have never seen so much money in our market.”

About 65% of pageviews on Billings’ property listings were from outside the metro area in the second quarter, up from about 57% a year earlier, according to

Corp News,

parent company of the Wall Street Journal, operates

Billings, surrounded by several mountain ranges, was founded as a 19th century railway town. Today, new residents are drawn to the area’s hiking trails and other outdoor activities. Yet unlike some small American towns, where second home buyers have played a notable role in setting up and increasing home prices, about 3% of Billings homes are vacation properties, according to .

Like much of the West, Billings is currently experiencing extreme heat. The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning in the area, which indicates weather conditions that could accelerate the spread of wildfires.

Emily and Travis Elwood decided during the pandemic that they wanted to move out of Portland, Oregon, where they were renting a two-bedroom apartment. They visited Billings last summer and were drawn to its size and affordability. “Frankly, [we] were never going to be able to buy a house in the Portland area, ”Ms. Elwood said. “We just wanted something a little smaller, a little tighter.”

Ms. Elwood continued to work in Oregon from Montana, and Mr. Elwood found new employment with Billings in a dental company. They moved in October and bought a three bedroom house in June for $ 316,000. Their monthly mortgage payment is lower than their monthly rent in Portland, Ms. Elwood said.

Small Montana markets, including Bozeman, also saw an influx of buyers during the pandemic. Some of the top reasons out-of-state shoppers chose Montana were safety and security, concerns about Covid-19 and the state’s smaller population, according to a survey of Montana Realtors by Montana State University Billings last summer.

The US mortgage market involves some key players who play an important role in the process. Here’s what investors need to understand and what risks they take when investing in the industry. WSJ’s Telis Demos explains. Photo: Getty Images / Martin Barraud

The average selling price of a single-family home in Billings and surrounding areas was $ 376,248 in June, up 32% from the previous year, according to the Billings Association of Realtors.


Was your city on the list? What makes it attractive to home buyers? Join the conversation below.

As in many markets across the country, the number of homes for sale is very low. There were 392 single-family dwellings in the Billings area in June, up from 433 a year earlier, the association said.

“There wasn’t much there,” said Claire Alden, who started shopping in Billings with her husband, Deaver Alden, this spring. “There was only one or two on the market at a time that we would consider at all.”

After the Aldens made their first offer for a house, they discovered that the seller had already accepted a cash offer on the same day the house was put on the market. They ended up buying a four bedroom house in June with a shed in the back which they plan to convert into a rental property.

The Wall Street Journal / Emerging Housing Markets Index ranks the 300 largest metropolitan areas in the United States. In addition to housing market indicators, the index incorporates economic and lifestyle data, including unemployment rate, wages, commuting time, and small business loans.

Home prices in the index’s top 20 markets rose 13.7% on average over the past year, surpassing an 8% increase for the 300 zones, but the top 20 zones still had a d ‘Median listing lower than that of the market as a whole, Danielle said. Hale, Chief Economist at

New residents are drawn to Billings for its hiking trails and other outdoor activities.

Write to Nicole Friedman at [email protected]

Copyright © 2021 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

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Man manipulates Montana rail link control units

Just before 9:40 a.m. on Saturday, a Missoula police officer responded to 500 Taylor Street to meet with Montana Rail Link employees regarding an intrusion into MRL property and tampering with MRL control boxes.

An employee reported seeing Tracy Ronning, a 58-year-old man, walking along the tracks near the Taylor Street crossing. He watched Ronning tamper with the lock on the control box. He saw Ronning open the door and start playing with the internal equipment. Police Information Officer Lydia Arnold explains.

“Officers were told that Ronning had entered Montana Rail Link property and was causing damage,” said Arnold. “When officers arrived at the scene, MRL employees were able to explain to officers that Ronning had entered a control signal box and was able to disable the train signals.”

MRL employees immediately saw that Ronning had shut off all power switches to the crossing warning devices. When an employee examined each of the boxes, he took photographs to document the condition they were in, then repaired them or the internal equipment or mechanisms to return them to the working condition they were in. were before being falsified.

“This is an extreme danger to public safety as the signaling of an upcoming train would not have worked if MRL employees could not see that the box was damaged,” Arnold said. “Pedestrians and drivers in the area would not have been informed that a train was crossing the level crossing. Fortunately, there was no incident. “

MRL employees said there could easily have been a collision between a vehicle or pedestrian and a train. An employee explained that in a collision the train always wins and is an inherently fatal situation for anyone struck by a train. He said controlled level crossings exist for public safety, as train collisions almost exclusively end in death or serious injury.

The employee said the Taylor Street crossing exists primarily to notify tankers filled with petroleum fuels when it is safe to cross the tracks. He said these trucks often pull double trailers full of fuel from the north side of the tracks to the south side of the tracks. Immediately south of this junction is a busy petrol station and the Eastgate Shopping Center. He said if a train collided with a tanker, the damage would be catastrophic.

By altering and cutting off power to MRL’s essential safety equipment, Ronning created a substantial risk of death or serious injury to the general public using the crossing. He is currently charged with criminal endangerment, criminal trespassing and criminal interference with property.

LOOK: What important laws were passed in the year you were born?

The data in this list was acquired from reliable online sources and media. Read on to find out which major law was passed in the year you were born, and learn its name, vote count (if any), impact, and meaning.

WATCH: This is the richest city in every state

Just saying the names of these towns immediately conjures up images of grand mansions, fancy cars, and fancy restaurants. Read on to see which city in your home country received the title of richest place and which place had the highest median income in the country. Who knows, your hometown might even be on this list.

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Op-Ed: Feeling the Drought on My Family Farm

I can see my future: it is dry, thirsty and dark. On our farm, we live with drought daily, work with limited groundwater and learn to adapt and adapt, or fail and abandon our fields. Water will determine the survival of a farmer.

I farm organically outside of Fresno, which is part of one of the richest and most productive agricultural oases in the world, provided, of course, we have water. Generally, we use two sources of liquid gold: the annual precipitation and snowmelt captured in the Sierra, as well as the groundwater table below our lands. Both are threatened by a lack of rain and snow, exacerbated by the slow depletion and over-pumping of our aquifers.

In the past, many of us took water for granted. We simply turned on the faucet or flipped an irrigation pump switch and the water magically appeared. He was there when we needed him until he wasn’t.

Many farmers have switched to drip irrigation, which limits water use and keeps plants alive, but intensifies the depletion of soil biology through irrigation. We fell into the trap of believing that technology and innovation would save us from water scarcity. Today, a comeback to reality greets every season: we cannot produce more water nor control the forces of nature.

A severe two-year drought dries out western and southwestern Washington to California, from Montana to Texas. Agriculture is feeling the impact with crop wilting and limited production. We started to fallow some of our fields, pull up vines and trees, and leave the land empty that my father and grandfather used to cultivate. They would cringe to witness what needs to be done.

Every fallow field means a declining rural economy and an uncertain future. The scope of the drought will be felt in grocery stores across the country with higher prices. Cheap food may no longer be the engine of agriculture. Everyone will pay the price for a lack of water.

Climate change cannot be denied. Historical precipitation amounts, based on 30-year averages, do not reflect significant variations in normal climate. And now drought is becoming the new normal; the golden age of constant precipitation over the past 50 to 100 years may have been the anomaly. Mega droughts that will last for decades could be on the horizon.

As farmers grapple with dwindling water, extreme temperatures – 116 in Portland, Oregon in late June or 118 in Phoenix – are affecting many more people. Suddenly, nature also takes on a new reality for city dwellers, who feel the heat and can taste the sweat of climate change.

How do we value water? Some farmers and river basin districts are faced with the decision: selling their water may be more profitable than farming. Will monetizing water be part of my family’s farming operation?

A larger question looms: who owns water and how should a natural resource be controlled and allocated?

Already California farmers – some screaming, others accepting that water has become a finite resource – must plan for sustainable groundwater use and limit our pumping so that our aquifers maintain a stable water supply. How do cities and the environment fit into our water future? The answer is not just economic or political: we must rethink water as something rare, sacred and shared by all.

Masumoto cleans the irrigation lines of his peach trees during another drought in 2015.

(Tomas Ovalle / For The Times)

On our farm, we cultivate perennial crops – organic peaches, nectarines, apricots and grapes for the raisins. We have century-old vines and 60-year-old peach trees that have witnessed huge climatic fluctuations – lingering over a season or a year is short-term thinking. COVID-19 highlights another lesson for this old farmer: Things are often out of our control. How we respond will determine what happens next.

I think of the generations on the land and the history I leave behind for my daughter, Nikiko, who partners on the farm with her brother, Korio. They will inherit climate change, prolonged droughts and whatever comes from the decisions we make now.

At the heart of our farm is a Japanese aesthetic captured in the sense of wabi-sabi: Life is imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. Drought exposes the inconsistency of nature and how the “perfect” fishing must reflect the imperfect weather we all experience.

Despite our thirsty future, there is a note of hope for me – I believe our farm is still incomplete. I inherited everything I have from my parents and grandparents; my children will take up this incomplete agricultural history and add their own chapters.

I remember the feeling at the start of a farming year. When I work the fields in the spring, something is plowed in me. With these irregular but regular droughts, something more is now being plowed on our family farm.

David Mas Masumoto is a farmer in Del Rey, California, and author of numerous books, including “Epitaph for a Peach: Four Seasons on My Family Farm”.

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Opinion: Montana union miners supply America | Chroniclers

The Stillwater mine in Nye is taken over by South African company Sibanye Gold, assuming the sale goes through.

CASEY PAGE, Gazette Staff


Building a stronger, more resilient nation in the aftermath of COVID-19 means transforming the economy, modernizing the infrastructure that connects the country, and better protecting the natural resources essential to prosperity.

While all Americans share the responsibility for forging that brighter future, Montana’s skilled and environmentally conscious union miners have a historic opportunity to lead the way.

About 1,600 members of the United Steelworkers (USW) Local 11-0001 in Sibanye-Stillwater take great pride in the responsible mining of metals needed for clean energy production, electronic components, building construction and to many other industries.

Vital as these workers already are, the nation will depend more than ever on them when the president’s infrastructure program – America’s Jobs Plan – unleashes unprecedented investments in roads and bridges as well as in schools, airports, water supply systems, railways and public transport, renewable energy and broadband networks.

For example, miners will experience an increased demand for platinum, a key ingredient in glass used in electronics and construction. The country will also need copper for wiring and nickel for the stainless steel that forms the backbone of bridges, roofs, construction equipment and rail cars.

And as the nation strives to grow its own economy, it will need more raw materials that go into wind turbines and solar panels as well as fuel cells that help power electric vehicles.

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People in Business for July 18, 2021 | Business people

With considerable experience as an architect, contractor and owner’s representative, Brad Malm is a professional expert in project management. He received a Masters of Architecture from the University of Utah followed by a successful career giving him a unique perspective on the construction process. Malm will use his skills to coordinate all phases of construction, keeping projects on-task, on-time and on-budget as the A&E Design Construction Project Manager. The multidisciplinary firm serves various market sectors from four locations across Montana and is delighted to welcome Malm to its team of innovators.

Architect Bob brooks was recently promoted to partner at Reid Smith Architects. He has worked in the firm for 11 years and is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame.

Elliot Martin recently joined the American Bank team as a Commercial Loans Assistant and will be responsible for supporting the Commercial Loans team in processing and closing commercial loans. Elliot graduated with a Bachelor of Finance from Montana State University in December 2020. Elliot has experience coordinating complex logistics operations in retail markets and providing excellent customer service as a manager. real estate for large-scale commercial properties. We are delighted to have Elliot on the team and look forward to facilitating his development in the banking industry.

Taslima shams is the most recent credit analyst to join the American Bank team. She holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Nevada at Reno and is pursuing a master’s degree in business administration at Louisiana State University. She moved to Bozeman from Reno, Nevada, where she held several banking positions for a large regional institution. Taslima focused on customer relations and cash management. She also received the ‘Most Valuable Banker’ award in 2020. We welcome Taslima, Bozeman and the American Bank team!

American Bank is pleased to announce the addition of Heather smith, Senior Vice President and Commercial Lender, to our team. Heather has extensive banking experience in many areas including operations, loans and credit administration. She obtained her credit risk certification from the Risk Management Association, which promotes principles of sound risk management in the financial services industry. She has a passion for coaching and developing others. In addition to lending, she will fulfill an indispensable role as a trainer and mentor for our credit staff as we continue to build and develop our team.

Robyn Erlenbush, The ERA Landmark Real Estate broker / owner attended the Real Trends ‘Gathering of Eagles’ conference in Colorado Springs, Colorado, held June 27-30, 2021. This annual event is a conference for CEOs and presidents of the nation’s top residential real estate companies. , senior executives of national franchises, relocation companies and referral networks. The Gathering of Eagles conference is the trusted source, providing executives with valuable industry information, trends and networking. ERA Landmark, established in 1976, has been an ERA broker member since 1979 and currently ranks 15th nationally for ERA companies.

Profitable Ideas Exchange (PIE) is proud to announce a key promotion in its leadership. Matt Ulrich is now director of growth. A graduate of Northwestern University where he was captain of the football team, Ulrich went on to play for the Superbowl-winning Indianapolis Colts before joining PIE nine years ago. Matt is a graduate of Leadership Montana, a member of the YMCA of Gallatin Valley board of directors, and an advisor to The Football Players Health Study at Harvard University.

Profitable Ideas Exchange (PIE) is proud to announce a key promotion in its leadership. John North, a graduate of MSU’s Jake Jabs School of Business, is now CFO. Nord holds an MBA from the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago and has worked at PIE for 12 years. He is an active CAP mentor at Bozeman and sits on the board of directors of the local chapter of Young Life.

Profitable Ideas Exchange (PIE) is proud to announce a key promotion in its leadership. Andi baldwin is now director of strategy. A graduate of the University of Rhode Island, with an MA in Public Diplomacy from the Maxwell & Newhouse Schools of Syracuse University, she worked at PIE for seven years. Baldwin is a native of Bozeman, a graduate of Leadership Montana and sits on the board of directors of Planned Parenthood of Montana.

Profitable Ideas Exchange (PIE) is proud to announce a key promotion in its leadership. Stephanie Cole is now COO. Cole graduated from MSU’s Jake Jabs School of Business. Cole received his MBA from Louisiana State University and is a graduate of Leadership Montana. She worked at PIE for 12 years and is involved in mentoring programs across the state. She also chairs the board of directors of Respire, a school and medical clinic in Gressier, Haiti, and is involved in the local adoptive parent community.

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