Community briefs published April 11

April 11, 2014 by  
Filed under Solar Energy Tips

Announcements

Helena Food Share gets a helping hand

Kiwanis and Home Depot are teaming up to help Helena Food Share on Saturday, April 12, at its main pantry location at 1616 Lewis St.

Helena Food Share needed some assistance with painting its pantry location where the bulk of its food distribution takes place. Kiwanis International volunteered to take on the project and Home Depot donated paint and supplies needed to complete the work.

Members of Kiwanis International and representatives of Home Depot will be at the pantry to complete the painting to maintain the pantry facility. They will start Saturday morning and anticipate completing the project the same day.

Soroptimists celebrate 70 years

Soroptimist International of Helena celebrates 70 years of service to the women and girls of Helena. Soroptimist is a professional women’s service organization with the mission to improve the lives of women and girls locally and throughout the world. Soroptimist International Helena was chartered April 15, 1944, at The Montana Club. The Helena charter was the second Soroptimist Club in Montana. To learn more about how this organization makes a difference in women’s lives, call 439-5639.

City of Helena plastics recycling

On April 22, the city of Helena will accept limited types 1 and 2 plastics for recycling at the transfer station.

The city will accept the following:

  • Type #1 clear and tinted plastic bottles
  • Type #1 clear trays (fruit and baked goods trays)
  • Type #2 opaque and translucent plastic (milk jugs)
  • Type #2 solid color plastics (laundry, juice, soap bottles)

All items must be cleaned and rinsed and lids removed. Properly handling and sorting materials reduces costs and risk of expense passed along to taxpayers. As with any access to the transfer station a permit or cash payment is required.

Tax service expands

To accommodate taxpayers during the week before the April 15 tax filing deadline, the Montana Department of Revenue will offer expanded hours at its call center during this time.

Taxpayers who need assistance can call the department’s call center toll free at 866-859-2254, or in Helena at 444-6900. Regular call center hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., but on April 10 and 11, the call center will be open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. On Saturday, April 12, it will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. And on April 14 and 15, it will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

As in recent years, the department strongly encourages taxpayers to file their taxes electronically. Taxpayers can file electronically using the department’s e-filing service, Taxpayer Access Point, aka TAP, or one of the many commercial e-filing products. For electronic filing options, visit www.revenue.mt.gov.

In addition to contacting the DOR call center, taxpayers can also receive assistance by visiting the Mitchell Building in Helena, 126 N. Sanders, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. If taxpayers need help filing electronically, they can simply prepare their state income tax return on paper and take it to the office. There, we’ll help them e-file at no cost. So far this year, DOR has helped several hundred taxpayers who visited these two offices.

There are also more than 100 volunteer tax preparation sites around the state through Volunteer Income Tax Assistance and AARP Tax-Aide Montana. To find out if you qualify and to see a comprehensive listing of locations, visit www.montanafreefile.org.

April 15 is also the deadline for submitting an application for the Property Tax Assistance Program (PTAP), which gives tax relief to qualified low-income homeowners. It’s also the deadline to submit the 2EC, a tax credit for elderly homeowners and renters. Go to revenue.mt.gov/home/property to download an application for PTAP and to revenue.mt.gov/Portals/9/individuals/forms/Form_2EC_2013.pdf to download the 2EC form.

Roadway safety improvements on Rogers Pass

The Montana Department of Transportation would like to notify the public and seek comments on a proposal regarding the following safety improvements for Highway 200 on Rogers Pass (between reference posts 90.0 and 91.0) near Lincoln:

  • Install a curve warning sign with flasher for westbound traffic
  • Install linear delineation on the inside and outside of the hairpin curve
  • Replace and extend the concrete jersey rail on the outside of the hairpin curve
  • Install an oversized warning sign with solar-powered dual flashing beacons at the top of the pass for eastbound traffic. The flashers would activate during winter weather.
  • This project is tentatively scheduled for construction in the spring of 2016.

No new right-of-way or utility relocations are anticipated for this project.

For more information, contact Steve Prinzing, Great Falls district preconstruction engineer, at 454-5880 or Gabe Priebe, project design engineer at 444-5446. For the hearing impaired, the TTY number is 444-7696 or 1-800-335-7592, or call the Montana Relay at 711. Written comments may be submitted to the Montana Department of Transportation Great Falls office at Great Falls office at P.O. Box 1359, Great Falls, MT 59403-1359, or online at www.mdt.mt.gov/mdt/comment_form.shtml noting comments are for project UPN 8038000. Alternative accessible formats of this information will be provided upon request.


Student News

High school women awarded for tech achievements

As part of an effort to encourage more young women to choose careers in technology, the National Center for Women and Information Technology, Northwestern Energy and Carroll College recognized six Montana high school women for their accomplishments and aspirations in computing and technology with the NCWIT Award for Aspirations in Computing.

The 2014 Montana winners are:

  • Taylor Wilkerson, senior, Helena High School (nominated by teacher Buffy Smith)
  • Claire Inman, junior, Helena High School (nominated by teacher Buffy Smith)
  • Emmy Keenan, senior, Anaconda High School (nominated by teacher Carrie Wolfe)
  • Courtney Linder, senior, Beaverhead County High School (nominated by teacher Brett Carver)
  • Anna Slown, junior, Big Sky High School (nominated by teacher Nicki Roe)
  • McKinley Hall, sophomore, Bozeman High School (nominated by teacher Kerri Cobb)
  • The 2014 Montana NCWIT Educator of the Year is Helena High’s Buffy Smith.

Community service grant awarded

Haley Walter, an 18-year-old from East Helena has been awarded a Sodexo Foundation Youth Grant through Youth Service America. The grant will support Walter in leading a community service project that addresses the issue of childhood hunger.

Service activities will take place on Global Youth Service Day, April 9, at the Helena Food Share Warehouse. This project focuses on giving food over the weekend to local children who might go hungry otherwise. Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church youth will be participating by packing the food to be distributed to the children.


Coming up

St. Baldrick’s Event

Every year, thousands of men, women and children have joined the St. Baldrick’s Foundation by giving up their locks to support childhood cancer research. Montana City Firefighters and Friends invite the community to make a “bald” statement at a St. Baldrick’s event at Montana City School on Saturday, April 12, at noon. There will also be live music, a BBQ and a silent auction. Registration for those who volunteer to be shaved starts at 11:30 a.m.

The event will honor Braden Denler, a Montana City 10-year-old who has been shaved at St. Baldrick’s event several times and who was diagnosed with cancer this past December.

So far, 53 volunteers have registered so far; two are cancer survivors, nine are women and 14 are kids. Visit www.montanacityfire.org and follow the St. Baldrick’s link for more information.

Season extension and yield prediction class

Join Helena Community Gardens on Tuesday, April 15, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the Lewis and Clark County Fairgrounds Conference Room for gardening class, Season Extension and Yield Predictions.

Brent Sarchet, County Agricultural Extension Agent will be sharing tips on how to predict yields from the garden and ways to extend the growing season. Contact Helena Community Gardens at helenacommunitygardens@gmail.com or 438-6049 for more information.

April AARP Driver Safety classes

AARP Driver Safety is offering an evening and a daytime “Smart Driver” class in Helena during April. Participants receive updates on the rules of the road and learn driving strategies to adapt to the effects of aging and to reduce chances of having a crash. The course was developed for participants age 50 and older, but is open to all ages. The course fee is $20 ($15 with AARP Membership Card). Auto Insurance Companies in Montana provide a multi-year discount to participants 55 years of age and older.

— Thursday, April 17, at Pheasant Glen, 3440 Ptarmigan Lane, from 5:30 to about 10 p.m.

— Thursday, April 24, at Mountain West Bank East, 2728 Colonial Drive, noon to about 4:30 p.m.

To register, call 457-4712.

Pinwheels for Prevention

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. To celebrate, Montana’s Children’s Trust Fund will join communities around Montana in “planting” blue pinwheels to symbolize a happy childhood. Pinwheels will be on display at the Capitol lawn until Friday, April 18. To get involved, call 444-6936.

March of Dimes annual Silent Auction

US Bank is having its 10th annual silent auction for March of Dimes. Anyone can bid on items that have been donated by Helena businesses. It will be available on Thursday, April 17, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Friday, April 18, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Meetings

School Community Relations Committee

Helena School District Community Relations Committee will meet at 8 a.m. on Friday, April 11, at the May Butler Center, 55 S. Rodney. For more information, call 324-2001.

School Board of Trustees meeting

Helena School District Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 11, at May Butler Center.

Benton Avenue Cemetery Association

Benton Avenue Cemetery Association will meet at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 15, at the Lewis Clark Library to discuss the annual clean-up, which will be held on Saturday, May 10, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

East Helena Historical Society

East Helena Historical Society will meet at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 16, in the library of the East Valley Middle School. Everyone who is interested in the history of the East Helena area is welcome. Call 442-2674 or 439-7183 for more information.

AARP chapter

AARP Lewis and Clark Chapter meets each month, except in July and August, at the Neighborhood Center, 200 S. Cruse. An optional luncheon will be held at 11:30 a.m. followed by a presentation at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, April 18. This month’s presentation is “What Goes On at the Archie Bray?” introduced by Bob Moes. For more information, call 442-7567.

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