Montana is a great place to work and play. Because of tax dollars, Montanans work together to educate our children, build and maintain infrastructure, keep the public safe, maintain clean air and water, and create an environment for a strong sustainable economy. 53% of our tax money comes from income taxes. Property, corporate income, vehicle, oil and natural gas, and other taxes contribute the rest of revenue to our general fund. Last year, Montana had a difficult budget to balance because of sky high fire-fighting costs and revenue that was below projections.
The legislature needs to protect programs that help our most vulnerable populations such as Meals-on-Wheels, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Budget cuts at the state level jeopardizes Missoula's Opportunity Resources, Inc. (ORI) program will have devastating effects. Some 800 developmentally disabled adults who are served by OR will be impacted. Fully funding programs such as these at the state level guarantees a federal match that is often as high as 4:1, a real bargain for Montanans in need.