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BC-MT--Montana News Digest, MT

February 1, 2019

Montana at 6 p.m.

The desk can be reached at 406-442-7440. For access to AP Exchange and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477. For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org.

TOP STORIES:

XGR-STATE OF THE STATE

HELENA _ Gov. Steve Bullock gives his final State of the State address to the Montana Legislature on Thursday night. (Address starts at 7 p.m. MT. AP Photos planned)

OUTDOOR RETAIL SHOW-POLITICS

DENVER _ Two years after jumping into a fight with the Trump administration over public lands, the U.S. outdoor industry is turning up the political pressure — though its impact is difficult to measure. Thousands of manufacturers and retailers gathered in Denver starting Wednesday for the annual Outdoor Retailer and Snow Show, and some of the biggest names vowed to keep pushing to preserve public lands. By Dan Elliott. SENT: 870 words, photos.

IN BRIEF:

_ MISSING MAN _ The body of a 29-year-old man who was reported missing on Jan. 24 has been found in northwest Montana.

_ SECURITIES FRAUD-SENTENCE _ A 62-year-old northwestern Montana man who a federal judge once said was “dangerous to the money and property of others” faces more than a decade in federal prison for running a Ponzi scheme and illegally possessing firearms.

_ MONTANA BUS HIJACKING _ Montana authorities are deciding on charges against a 52-year-old Washington state man who they say hijacked a bus and forced a nearly 10-hour standoff with police.

_ UNIVERSITY OF PROVIDENCE-PROGRAM CUTS _ Administrators at the University of Providence say several academic and athletic programs soon will be gone.

_ PARK FEES _ A pair of bills under consideration by Montana lawmakers would make changes in a $6 fee used to help fund state parks and trails.

_ POWER PLANT-ASH PONDS _ The Montana Department of Environmental Quality estimates that cleaning up three coal ash ponds at the Colstrip power plant will cost as much as $700 million.

_ MONTANA BUS HIJACKING-THE LATEST _ Authorities say an armed man who hijacked a passenger bus and held a person hostage during a prolonged standoff with police in Montana has surrendered

_ MONTANA TEACHER-RAPE _ A former high school teacher in eastern Montana has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old student.

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