Friends of Mountain Line Launch Mill Levy Support Effort

Released at: August 15, 2013
Contact: Derek Goldman

Proponents include Mayor, Missoula Downtown Association, Community Medical Center

Contact: Derek Goldman, (406) 370-6491, derek@friendsofmountainline.org  

MISSOULA, Mont. -- Mayor John Engen, and a host of community groups and organizations including the Missoula Downtown Association, Community Medical Center, ASUM Office of Transportation, MontPIRG, and Montana Conservation Voters today launched Friends of Mountain Line, a committee formed to support Missoula’s public bus system and Mountain Line’s first mill levy election since 1976. The request will appear on the ballot in the November 5 mail-ballot election.

“Mountain Line is a true community partner benefitting all Missoulians,” said Missoula Mayor John Engen, treasurer for the new organization. “I consider our bus system essential to the quality of life, and strong business climate we enjoy in Missoula as well as vital to the future of our community.”

The launch took place at an 11 a.m. event at Mountain Line’s downtown transfer station, where speakers and supporters gathered to kick-off a citywide effort.

“Public transportation lowers traffic and parking congestion in Missoula all of which helps to keep our downtown area vibrant,” said Todd Frank, owner of The Trail Head and President of Missoula Downtown Association. “Mountain Line also helps reduce single vehicle trips, which helps lessen air pollution in the Missoula valley, and makes a significant contribution to the Missoula business community.”

If approved by the voters, Mountain Line will be able to meet increasing demand for curbside service for seniors and people with disabilities, extend bus service into the late evening hours, and increase bus frequency on busy routes.

 “For the last 35 years, Mountain Line has helped students get to school, employees get to work, and ensured that seniors and people with disabilities can remain independent,” said Topher Williams, volunteer board member of ASUM’s Office of Transportation. “Now, for the first time since 1976, Missoula’s community bus service is asking voters this November to approve an increase in the property tax mill levy that funds our bus system.”

 “For many people, Mountain Line is vitally important for accessing medical care, and the bus also offers additional opportunities for daily physical activity, walking or biking to and from bus stops,” said Mary Windecker, Vice President of Planning & Marketing at Community Medical Center. “People who use the bus add an average of 20 minutes of walking to their daily lives.”

Initial supporters of Friends of Mountain Line include:

  • John Engen, Mayor
  • Jason Wiener, Alderman, Ward 1
  • Asa Hohman, President, Associated Students of the University of Montana (ASUM)
  • Rep. Ellie Hill
  • Rep. Nancy Wilson
  • Rep. Caroline Squires
  • Sen. Sue Malek
  • Montana Conservation Voters
  • Montana Public Interest Research Group (MontPIRG)
  • Montana Women Vote
  • Community Medical Center
  • Missoula Downtown Association
  • ASUM Office of Transportation

Supporters are encouraged to join up at www.FriendsofMountainLine.org and on Facebook.

Now in its 35th year of operations, Mountain Line provides more 900,000 rides annually in Missoula.

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commented 2013-12-21 17:19:48 -0700 · Flag
Thank you
Paid for by Friends of Mountain Line
John Engen, Treasurer ● PO Box 484 ● Missoula, MT 59806
406-541-5839 ●  www.FriendsofMountainLine.org
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