MSU Extension recently released the results of a survey conducted last year to determine what issues Montanans are most concerned about.  Over 2400 Montanans from across the state participated, with respondents from every county.  Fair warning:  That works out to less than a quarter of 1% (>0.25%) of Montana residents participating.

The first section of the report goes into the demographics of who participated.  Yellowstone, Cascade, Deer Lodge, Lewis and Clark, Flathead, Missoula and Gallatin counties all had over 100 people each take part.  Gallatin was the only one to break 200, with 208 participants.  (Imagine that, a survey from MSU had a lot of responses in Gallatin county.)  70% of the survey takers were women.  83% had some level of college or other post-high school education, such as a trade or tech school.

Let's get into the results.  None of these surprised me.  To be perfectly honest, I would have been more surprised if these weren't towards the top of the list.  According to the survey, some of the most important issues to Montanans are:

Water Quality


Community Infrastructure

Air Quality

Ag profitability

Land Preservation/Management

Senior services

Affordable housing

Like I said, none of them were all that surprising.

The next section expanded on the issues from the previous section, asking about the survey taker's satisfaction with the current state of each.  For example, 83.7% of respondents said affordable housing was an important issue to them, and 74.2% went on to say they were unhappy with the current state of affordable housing in Montana.

Up next was a section on offerings from MSU Extension.  The participants were asked whether or not they would attend an MSU program on a number of topics.  The top result that people said 'Yes' to was home gardening, with just under 49%.  Rounding out the top five were tree and shrub care, alternative energy, estate planning, and soil health.

There's far more information available in the report than what I've talked about, so be sure to give the full report a read.





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