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Residents Fire Reax
3:44 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Residents nervously watch progress of the Lolo Creek Complex fire

Sleeman Road residents gather to share updates about the fire with their neighbors
Credit Sally Mauk

Residents of Sleeman Gulch, a few miles east of the Lolo Creek Complex fire off Highway 12, have been placed on pre-evacuation notice - meaning they need to be ready to leave on the spur of the moment. Sleeman road is a one-way-in, one-way-out gravel road.

Kirk Derby lives near the end of the road, in a house he and his wife just bought a year ago. Last night they left to wait out the fire in town, but returned today to clear more stuff from their house.

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Planned Parenthood
1:20 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Planned Parenthood of Montana's new president and CEO

Planned Parenthood of Montana's Martha Stahl
Credit Edward O'Brien

Planned Parenthood of Montana's new President and C-E-O, Martha Stahl, says she's a natural fit for the organization.

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Highway closure
1:06 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Highway 12 remains closed for now

This just released from the Lolo Creek Complex public information officers:

  Incident commanders have evaluated opening Highway 12 to escort traffic through and into the fire area and determined there are still too many hazards in the area of the Lolo Creek Complex. The decision will be evaluated again at 5pm. Safety of the public and firefighters continues to be the top priority.

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Education
11:07 am
Tue August 20, 2013

State expanding early childhood education pilot program

Caregiver Amanda Hatch plays with two-year-old Maya at her day care center Katerpillar Korner in Helena.
Credit Dan Boyce

Governor Steve Bullock is looking to put more focus into early childhood education—that is, education before a kid is five years old. Bullock said Montana ranks near the bottom of states in investment in early ed.

However, state spending did increase this past legislative session by nearly $2 and a half million dollars.

Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce says that money will go toward increasing a ranking program for day-care centers called the Best Beginnings Stars to Quality Program.

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Lolo Creek Complex
10:22 am
Tue August 20, 2013

4 Homes confirmed lost in the Lolo Creek Complex

Latest mapping
Credit Sally Mauk

Four homes are confirmed to have been lost in the 5000 acre Lolo Creek Complex fire.

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Lolo Creek complex
7:11 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

Images from today's fire blowup west of Lolo

West Fork Two fire plume
Sally Mauk

Here are some images from the blowup of the West Fork Two and Schoolhouse fires into what's now called the "Lolo Creek Complex" burning along Highway 12 about 10 miles west of Lolo. The complex is now estimated to be 3500 acres in size, and some homes have been confirmed lost though no injuries have been reported. A Type 1 Incident Management team is en route to manage the fire.  Missoula County Disaster and Emergency Services has established a hotline for residents to get information - that number is 258-4636.

West Fork 2 Fire
6:04 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

Shelter for West Fork 2 Fire evacuees

Sally Mauk
Credit Sally Mauk

This just in: The Montana Red Cross has opened a shelter at Christ the King Church, 1400 Gerald Avenue in Missoula to accommodate evacuees of both the Industry Street hazmat emergency and the Lolo wildfire. The Lolo School is also  serving as a shelter for Highway 12 evacuees.

Healthcare
5:19 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

Lindeen: Health Insurance on MT's Obamacare marketplace competitive

Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica Lindeen

 The country has just a few more months before many of the major elements of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, go into effect. This includes a requirement for Americans to buy health insurance, starting the first of the year.

An online marketplace will be giving Montanans without insurance options to buy plans from one of three providers. In this Feature Interview, Capitol Reporter Dan Boyce speaks with Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica Lindeen about choices people will have regarding the marketplace.

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Breaking news
4:55 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

West Fork 2 Fire Meeting CANCELLED

This just in From the Lolo National Forest:

A planned public meeting for tonight at Travelers Rest State Park has been cancelled due to ongoing emergency fire operations and evacuations. Residents should come to the Lolo Super Stop for fire information until 9 P.M. tonight

 

Highway 12 is now closed beginning at the junction of Highway 93. Residents are being allowed to access the area.

 

 

Missoula County Office of Emergency Services has established a hotline for landowners and residents in the fire area.

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