Local group pressures Lewis and Clark County for passenger rail commitment

Nolan Lister

A local advocacy group renewed calls for Lewis and Clark County commissioners to get on board with the Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority’s effort to restore long-distance passenger rail service on Amtrak’s North Coast Hiawatha line through Helena.

Members of Sleeping Giant Citizens Council, the tri-county area chapter of the Northern Plains Resource Council, petitioned the commission to commit to joining the Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority (BSPRA), a move the county has put off for years over a number of concerns.

The group spoke out during the commission’s Thursday meeting and held a rally outside of the City-County Building.

Sleeping Giant Citizens Council member Paul Pacini presented a petition containing the signatures of 670 people who support the re-establishment of passenger rail service through Lewis and Clark County, 538 of who are county residents and 114 of who reside in neighboring counties and “would like to travel to Helena and probably spend money,” he said.

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“We’re here today to sincerely ask our county commission to pass a resolution to join the Big Sky Passenger Rail Authority and to be a partner in shaping our

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