FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 7, 2015
Dave Parker, Communications Director, 444-9844
Mike Wessler, Deputy Communications Director, 444-9725
Governor Steve Bullock Signs Bill Making Scobey Soil Official State Soil of Montana
Bozeman, MT - Governor Steve Bullock today was joined by Sen. J.P. Pomnichowski, former Governor and soil scientist Brian Schweitzer, and students from Longfellow Elementary School, as he hosted a ceremonial signing of SB 176, making the Scobey Soil the official state soil of Montana. The bill was brought forward at the request of the students, and carried by Pomnichowski.
“Today we’re not only making the Scobey Soil the official state soil of Montana, we’re also showing these students that if they can make an impact on their state and community, regardless of how young they are,” Bullock said of the measure. “With future leaders of our state, like the students at Longfellow Elementary, our future is looking bright.”
In addition to bringing forward the bill, during the 2015 legislative session, students traveled to the capitol to lobby legislators and testify in committees in support of the measure. They also created a website (http://montanasoil.weebly.com/) to provide information about the soil and to collect petition signatures in support of the measure.
“These students worked long and hard for culmination of their lawmaking effort, and I commend them,” said Pomnichowski. “Because of their study, research, and diligence, as well as the guidance of a couple of crackerjack teachers, Debbie Nelson and Kristin Sigler, they have not only championed for our state a basic and solid new symbol but also have learned the intricacies of the state legislature first-hand. The Governor’s signature making it the law of the land was most gratifying for them and for me. School administrators, parents, and MSU scientists past and present deserve thanks for helping to shepherd this bill to completion.”
Scobey soil is most prevalent near Great Falls and the Hi-Line. It is known for its productivity for farming wheat and supporting ranching activities in Montana.