Representative Steve Daines was in Missoula Monday to talk to representatives of the Montana Wood Products Association about reducing federal regulations to provide access to more timber.

Daines had just flown over the Thompson River Fire Complex before driving to Missoula to visit the Roseburg Forest Products plant on Raser Drive.

"We need to keep fighting to improve the wood products industry in Montana," Daines said. "When I was growing up in Bozeman we had 30 sawmills in Montana, but today we're down to 11. We need to turn around the timber industry and keep these jobs growing in Montana."

Daines had a brief tour of the recently upgraded facility at Roseburg, and was impressed by the increased productivity.

"They've made millions of dollars of investment here to modernize their operating lines and now they're running 24/7," he said. "Roseburg has 120 employees and these are good high-paying jobs with good benefits. These are the kinds of jobs we need in Montana, to raise our per capita income, since we're one of the lowest in the country."

Daines was asked about the addition of a new Democratic Senatorial candidate to the campaign, Butte schoolteacher Amanda Curtis.

"You know, it doesn't change what we're doing," Daines said. "We're working hard, continuing to focus on jobs and the economy, as well as the overreach of the federal government. It's about more jobs and less government. That hasn't changed, and that won't change."

Representative Steve Daines