Nov 12, 2012 7:30 PM by Angela Douglas - Q2 News

Freshman legislators eager to make a change in Helena

BILLINGS - When Montana's 2013 legislative session convenes in Helena in January, there will be 38 new freshman legislators taking their seats for the first time.

The 150 law makers will spend the 90-day session considering and voting on hundreds of motions, on hundreds of bills.

We caught up with a couple of new state representatives from Yellowstone County eager to make a difference this upcoming session.

"One of my biggest focuses is natural resource extraction," said Representative-elect Daniel Zolnikov of House District 47. "Getting Montana on path to actually have a stable economy that's really pushing the limits. We are really behind right now, we're about 49th in the nation. We're just not offering anything. Jobs wise, we're behind and we have so much to offer, so it's a very disappointing situation that we're facing right now."

Representative-elect Clayton Fiscus of House District 46 agrees that the state needs more jobs and residents need more tax relief.

"Right now it's not uncommon to have people with $4,000 a year property taxes on their home, so they should get some relief there," said Fiscus. "Get some good paying jobs in the state. Our unemployment isn't like the rest of the state, it's good, but we can get a lot better and if we use our natural resources properly, we can have more revenue, more wealth for the economy."

Both Zolnikov and Fiscus hope to reach across party lines and find compromise in this upcoming session.

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