Today, Governor Bullock's Hire Montanans First Act appears in the Business and Labor Committee at the state legislature as House Bill 490. Bullock campaigned on the legislation and held a press conference to announce the bill yesterday.

The bill's sponsor, Butte area representative Amanda Curtiss, says the bill is necessary because too many companies receive government contracts and receive tax payer funds, but choose skip over the current requirement of having to hire 50% of staff from Montana.

HB 490 includes a new fee system that will charge those who refuse to hire Montanans $1,000 every week, capping out at $10,000.

Curtis says that the current fine for not using any Montana workers has been disregarded and is often paid as part of the course of doing business. As a result, there are job sites that do not include any Montana workers.

Curtiss says she has rousing support from both sides of the aisle for the bill. It will likely appear on the house floor by next Monday or Tuesday for it's first hearing.

Amanda Curtiss: