Musselshell Valley Development Corp.

Roundup, Montana, Musselshell County : annual report 1970-71 (Volume 1971) online

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This report is written in the hope of conveying to the reader some idea
of the purport of this Concerted Services project; of how it was initiated
and interpreted to date; and of the development of its objectives.

We are indebted to those members of the National Interdepartmental Task
Force who approved this area for a project. These members, Ca B, Gilliland,
Department of Agriculture, John McCauley, Department of Labor and Sherrill
McMillan, Department of Health, Education & Welfare, have been most helpful
in providing information, establishing contacts, and arranging appointments.
They have planted a ray of hope for a small, rural community.

At district level, Clarence Nybo of the Employment Security Commission,
Billings, has given countless hours in sharing his experience and knowledge
to assist in the fulfillment of objectives. He has also acted as liaison
with Chairman Fred Barrett of the Montana Employment Security Commission
and Jess Fletcher, Director of the Montana State Employment Service,

In the Soil Conservation Service, Area Director, Hubert Beckers, has
maintained close contact with activities of this C. S, T. E. office and
is ready to assist wherever possible. Vern Griffith, Economic Development
Representative, Butte, is trying to bring life to our projects. Russ Estes
of the Center for Industrial Development, Bozeman, has done an excellent
job with his intensive studies.

At the local level, opportunities are enhanced by the close cooperation of
Darryld Kautzmann, County Agent, and Pete Tragitt, Soil Conservation Service,
Both men have an excellent grasp and awareness of area resources, capabil-
ities, problems and limitations.

Also, very responsive to the needs of the commionity are County Commissioners,
Arnold Johnson, Geno Minnie and Ed Robson, and the members of the Overall
Economic Development Committee.

Despite some fine coordinated efforts and an abundance of willing assist-
ance, the financial hurdle still remains a major stumbling block to advance-
ment. Even a matching percentage of ten can present an awesome figure to
this depressed area.



Slightly over one year ago, the Manager of the Billings State Employment
Service office, after spending considerable time with the Musselshell
Valley Development Corporation, suggested that a Concerted Services Pro-
ject be considered for Musselshell County and the surrounding area.

The purpose of the project would be to involve the local community and
coordinate the activities of agencies representing all levels of govern-
ment, in an effort to stop the movement of people from the rural to the
urban areas. This could best be accomplished through training, education
and the creation of new jobs. The Governor's office was contacted as well
as the State Employment Security Commission and the State Planning Board.
Endorsement for the project was obtained from the Governor. On June
24, 1970, a meeting was arranged by Clarence H. Nybo, Manager of the
Billings office of the Montana State Employment Service with represent-
atives of the Interdepartmental Task Force on Concerted Services in
Training and Education and representatives from state and county agencies
and members of the Musselshell Valley Development Corporation. The
Interdepartmental Task Force was represented by John S. McCauley, U. S.
Department of Labor; Sherrill McMillan, U. S. Office of Education;
C. B. Gilliland, U. S. Department of Agricult\are. Prior to the meeting
the Task Force representatives visited the rural areas that would be
involved in the project.

The official request for the project that was submitted by the Musselshell
Valley Development Corporation, was reviewed at the meeting.

Federal agencies represented on the Interdepartmental Task Force are the
Departments of Labor; Health, Education & Welfare; Agriculture; Commerce;
Interior; Office of Economic Opportunity and the Appalachian Regional


The Montana State Employment Service developed a project proposal which
was funded by the U, S, Department of Labor in the amount of $25,730,
for the ten (10) months remaining of Fiscal Year 1971. Jess C. Fletcher,
Director of the Montana State Employment Service, assigned the respons-
ibility of general supervision of the project to the Manager of the
Billings, Montana, Local Office who has administrative responsibilities
for the area involved. Ce S. T« Eo Coordinator, Ralph Gildroy, lifetime
native of the area, started work on September 1, 1970, and an office
was opened in Roundup, Montana, to coordinate the project. The balance
of this report demonstrates the ability of government to work with local
people so that they can become involved in solving their own problems
and making their commionities a better place to live.

IJlBCi 01 G0JV7£ JV7S



EDUCATION AND TRAINING — — — ______________________ _-_-=== 3

VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE _______ — __ — __ — - - - — - - ____„ 4

COMMUNITY SURVEY »„_ - _ — —.— — - - ——— — -• __._.___ .___ 5

PLANNING & ZONING __________ — ____.__„_______ __-_„ 6

MEDICAL — - . ._____. ._.____.^ ________ _=__. 8

THE MUSHROOM INDUSTRY • — — — — ■ ■ ■— = 11

MUSSELSHELL COUNTY'S COAL _____-__- . . - -. , ___= 12

MONTANA ART BRONZE •- _______ . _ . - = 14

MUSEUM, ART & BRONZE SHOWPLACE — - — ■ — ■ .__-_= 15


FARM-RANCH MANAGEMENT -• ■ - -■ ■- — • 18


OUTDOOR RECREATION ______________ . ._-__ 21

BASINS STUDY — ■- ._-___ _______ . ______ ____„ 23

HELENA SEMINAR — ______ _ ■ ■ 24

Clarence H. Nybo, Manager
Billings Employment Service Office

Due to the long term decline in economic activities of the area, manpower
activities, this first year, can best be described as a holding action -
holding on to jobs that exist in the community. The community had
only one doctor who had served notice that unless another doctor was
located by July 1, 1971, he would leave the area as he could not pos-
sibly serve the medical needs of the community. This in turn would re-
quire the closing of the community hospital and the county operated nurs-
ing home. If this happened, the community would have directly lost
sixty (60) salaried persons with earnings totaling near $300,000, plus
the local doctor and his staff and their earnings. Additional cost to
the county in moving and supporting nursing home patients in other towns
would be significant. This also would have meant that other people of
that community would have to travel fifty (50) miles to Billings, Montana
to obtain medical care. There is virtually no public transportation serv-
ing the area. Concerned community citizens and government officials
requested that Concerted Services make the obtaining of a doctor a pri-
ority project. Through national and local channels, both public and
private, the coordinator was able to obtain a doctor from Canada, one
week before the deadline. Without the effort generated by C. S. T. E.,
a doctor would not have been obtained and over sixty (60) persons would
have lost their jobs and a community, its total medical facilities.

The coordinator has met with a Montana Congressional Delegation to urge
relief for small mines under the new Federal Mine Safety Law. This is
an effort to keep small area mines in operation. Thirty-five (35) jobs
are involved.

Manpower training enrollments and completions to date include:

MDTA - 4 JOP - 6 OJT - 2 STEP - 2

All training was directed towards firms starting a new business or plan-
ning expansion that would provide additional local jobs. The following



projects have been given priority by the Montana State Employment Service
and the local Concerted Services board in an effort to generate more jobs
in the community. All proposed industries involved have been assured
of immediate support in the development of manpower training programs
to qualify local unemployed persons for employment in their plant and
also to assist the plant in the reduction of training costs.

In cooperation with CAMPS, The State Employment Service and the Area
Vocational Teclinical Center, assistance was rendered to the Roundup School
relative to the establishment of a distributive education program.

The C, S. T. E. office has served as an area resource for Employment
Service operated training and employment programs such as contacting
prospective MDT trainees, youth for special summer work projects and ap-
plicants for out of area employment.

With the assistance of the Montana State Employment Service, a comprehen-
sive small community survey was developed and is currently in progress
at this time. Included in the survey was information on education and
manpower skills within the county. Projects currently underway which
were assisted by Concerted Services was the establishment of the Willow
Creek Lumber Company with the Employment Service providing six (6)
training positions and the Montana Art Bronze Foundry with the Employment
Service providing one training position. Both of these firms have the
potential of increasing current employment of six to ten workers to about
20 to 25 workers.

Employment potential in the future are projects involving strip mining
for coal which would provide 15 - 25 jobs, all of them at high salary
levels. The raising of mushrooms in area mines together with processing
of the mushrooms could result in 100 - 125 new positions. The latter
operation would need manpower training assistance.


iDVeJiJ90J^ 6 7!R^9>/9JVg

Groundwork is now being laid for programs in education and training.
For a 12 week period this summer, two W. I. C. H. E.* interns are work-
ing, under sponsorship of the Concerted Services Office, on the Mussel-
shell County Community Survey. This survey will provide needed infor-
mation for education and training programs.

Due to crowded conditions at the Junior and Senior High School, it is
difficult to plan for needed education and training programs. This
Coordinator has had numerous meetings with the Superintendent of schools
in an effort to evolve some plan of addition that would permit some
flexibility in scheduling. Considered were a Skill Center or a City-
County-School Library, either of which would ease the crowded conditions.
Due to limited bonded indebtedness, and this being a depressed area,
it will be difficult to pass a bond issue for this construction. Grant
money will have to be located. There should be an expansion to the school
Vo-Tech and Vo-Ag should be added to the program.

A tractor safety course was given to 16 local youths to qualify them
for farm tractor work this summer. This was a 24 hour course in tractor
and machinery safety and care. In cooperation with the County Extension
office, a number of local agricultural representatives sponsored re-
quired classroom instruction. This amounted to six two hour sessions
that detailed machinery construction, application, proper field pro-
cedures, machinery lubrication, preventive maintenance, and operational
safety. In addition to classroom instruction, students were given four
hours of supervised tractor driving practice.

This office has been working closely with the local school system to
assist in any way possible. Records and follow-ups on students in
funded programs are maintained by this office.

*W. I. C. H. E. - Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education


VDe^J90J^^C ^C,^9QVLJV^C

There is a need for a vocational agriculture department in
the Roundup school system. Roundup is in the center of a 30,000
square mile agricultural area with no vo=ag department »

With all the emphasis on the necessity for top management in
agriculture if the owner is to remain in business, there is a real
need for some educational foundation at high school level for those
students interested in the Agri=businesSo

At the present time, Roundup High School is too crowded to
accomodate the necessary expansion for a vo=ag department. This
Coordinator has spent numerous sessions with the school superin-
tendent trying to devise som.e way to make this accomodation pos-
sible. With the present economic situation in our area, the very
low per capita income and bonded indebtedness, it is not possible
at the present time to put on an addition to the school unless we
can obtain some grant money.

We now have a course of study for a vo-ag program and we have
sufficient material for a four year programo We have considered,
as an interim program, evening sessions for adults to determine
the amount and degree of interest.


eoMMVJ^9jy sv!jvjcy

On May 13, 1971, copies of a survey were mailed to all heads of
household in Musselshell County. 37% of the surveys were returned.

Questions relating to housing, family, health, employment, training,
education, and neighborhood were framed by local committees repre-
senting the particular areas. Additional assistance was rendered
by Clarence Nybo and his staff of the Employment Security Commission
in tailoring the questions regarding employment, and, also, admin-
istering a trial run of the questionnaire to an A. B. E.* class in
Billings. Modifications of the questionnaire were made following the
trial testing and prior to the mailing.

Two W, I, C. H. E,* interns were requested by this office, and are
presently at work, for the purpose of tallying the results of the
questionnaire, establishing relationships within the questionnaire,
making telephone contacts or personal interviews with interested
persons, and studying housing and building and industrial sites as
time permits.

Copies of this report will be forwarded when completed in September.

♦W.I.C.H.E. - Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education
*A.B.E. - Adult Basic Education


Pi:-4jv^gjvg 6 Z9JV5^g

In order to do a thorough job of master planning and zoning, a
standard soil survey is a prerequisites Such a basic study is
critical to the foundation of our master plan^ The study should
identify soil resources and limitations and, also, identify present
land use and topography »

Efforts have been made to establish a priority with the Soil Conser-
vation Service by local input. Since both Musselshell and Golden
Valley Counties are economically depressed and, since they conform
to a logical pattern for extension of completed soil survey areas,
a proposal was submitted to Housing and Urban Development for 50%
cost sharing.

Suggested f \:inding is as follows for a 5 year period :

50% HUD 701 Funds

$ 85,140



25% Soil Conservation £


CO-01 Funds



8, 5 14 /year

Golden Valley County



1,805 /year

Musselshell County




Other Sources



4 , 000/year






The detailed soil survey would be used for the following principal
purposes :

( A, ) To provide a basis for proper land use^
( Be ) As a scientific land evaluation for tax purposes,
( C» ) As a basis for proposed zoning activitieso

( D. ) As a teclinical guide in dealing with problems from potent-
ial surface mining operations including preservation of the Bull
Mountain Watershed,
( Eo ) Evaluation of recreational & wildlife areas such as the

Franklin Basin and Adams Couleeo
( Fe) To provide soil engineering data for home, business, public
and industrial building sites , including feedlots, for highway
planning and relocation, for solid waste and sewage disposal sites,
and for additional irrigation water storage sites with its sup-
plemental flood control benefits.



The total area of Musselshell and Golden Valley Counties is 1,960,900
acres « To date, there are approximately 824,000 acres that have been
soil surveyed of v,?hich about 50 percent will meet present day stand-
ard soil survey requirements. This leaves approximately 1,548,000
acres to be soil surveyed including 412,000 acres of resurvey.

Unfortunately, there are no HUD 701 funds available from our State
for the 1970-71 fiscal year or for the 1971-72 fiscal year. Therefore,
the Soil Conservation Service will not approve this request for a soil
survey. We have been unable to find any other source of matching funds.



One doctor has been attempting to serve a medical community of 6,000
people in this area since February, 1970. Despite considerable efforts
by many individuals to locate another doctor, no progress was made. As
a result, the Concerted Services Office was asked on March 2nd to assume
the responsibility for locating a doctor. With a national shortage of
50,000 doctors and a predicted increase in this shortage in the next ten
years, this proved to be more of a challange than was anticipated. Further
complicating the problem was a June 15th deadline set by our one and only
doctor. This deadline, if not met, meant that our doctor would leave the
community to take a position in an area where he would have some assistance.

The first step was to set up a medical committee of nine interested persons.

In a series of meetings, it was established that if we lost our one doctor,
it would mean the closing of the hospital and nursing home and the doc-
tor' s clinic, with a total loss of sixty employed persons; the loss of
medical facilities would seriously hamper prospects for future develop-
ments; the transfer of both hospital and nursing home patients to other
areas would represent a considerable additional cost to the county; to
keep the hospital open without a doctor and with just key personnel would
cost 13 to 15,000 dollars per month (this would be to retain existing
staff members in a struggle for more time). All of these signified a
tremendous impact on the local economy.

To defray expenses in obtaining a doctor, contributions were received from
the Hospital Board, the County Commissioners, the Chamber of Commerce, and
the Junior Chamber of Commerce. An early decision was made to advertise
in metropolitan centers whenever a member of our community visited the
area for a few days. This was for the purpose of establishing a personal,
initial contact with a prospective doctor. This method was used only once.
Consolidated Coal Co. , a prospective new industry in our county, took an
interest in our medical problem and ran three full page ads in Time

Much assistance was received from the Washington Interdepartmental Task
Force during the Concerted Services sessions April 26-30. Appointments



were set with Helen Johnston and Dr. George Courie of Public Health Ser-
vice and members of the Montana Congressional Delegation. This was in
an effort to obtain a doctor under the new Emergency Health Personnel Act.

Senator Lee Metcalf took the initiative in laying the groundwork for get-
ting a doctor under this new act and the Selective Service April 26th
Directive and Senator Mansfield's office was ready to assist in the event
everything was arranged at State and local level. Locally, 1,876 sig-
natures had been obtained in hopes of obtaining a doctor under the Emer-
gency Health Personnel Act. This act has not yet been funded and it will
be 1972 before it can become functional. Under the selective service
directive community essentiality was established at State level, but this
approach failed to work out at local level.

Among other attempts that were made:

( 1. ) To establish a "rotation of interns" plan with Duke University.
This failed due to our Montana laws which do not authorize an intern
to function in a hospital unless a licensed physician is in attendance.
This coordinator urged State offices to have these laws amended at
the next legislative session.

(2.) To establish a "rotation of residencies" with University of
Washington Medical School. Dr. Emory Schwarz indicated that this
will take two years to ready.

(3.) To obtain temporary help from doctors of the Medical Mission,
offices in Philadelphia. This Mission was contacted in May, as soon
as it was learned that it was contemplating trying to assist in the
U. S. as well as foreign countries. Sister Janet Gottschalk informed
that two weeks after notification of this intent, she had received
two file drawers full of letters from around the U. S.

(4.) To request help from the Yellowstone Medical Society on a one or
two day a week basis for relief of our doctor, Dr, Paul Butler announced
this at one of the meetings, but there was no response.

(5.) To explain our situation to Maria Garza-Pena of Rural Health
Service, Denver, There was no response.

( 6. ) To request help from Dr, William Dorsey of the United Mine Work-
ers, Denver, He wrote that all of his attempts in the past three years



to obtain help for small communities had failedo

By June 1st, there was no hint of a promise to solve our dilemma of the
June 15th deadlineo Twenty two responses to the Time ad were in hand
and in the follow=up, six appeared favorable,.

Pressure was applied for an early visit to Ro^undup and arrangements were
made with a local pilot to fly them.a One doctor was flown in from Canada
on June 5th and one from Pennsylvania on June 12tho Three others were
scheduled to fly in early in July, Follow=ups were initiated by phone
following the visitation.

On June 21, the Canadian doctor accepted our invitation to practice here
and will join us on August 15th« Another doctor will make it a threesome
within eleven months.

Recognizing the seriousness of the doctor shortage, and its effect on a
community, this coordinator is now trying to encourage the other three
doctors scheduled for a visit to pay visits to some other communities
in this region. In addition, letters have been written to the Congress-
ional delegation urging that action be taken to try to alleviate medical
problems with emphasis on a Medical University for States in this region.


MvssicsMiLL eovj^jys eoAL

Number of beds : 13

Known reserve 1,261,249,000 tons

Reserve for underground mining 1,020,247,000 tons (Based on 50% recovery)

Reserve for strip mining 70,305,000 tons (Based on 60% recovery)

Area of Unmiried Reserves 330,078 Acres

Overburden for underground mining 50' to 700'

Overburden for strip operations 30' to 100'

Seam thickness 28" to 144"

BTU 10,500 to 11,500 as received

This coal is an excellent quality coal with a very low sulphur content,
making it highly desirable for generation of power. The Consolidated Coal Co.
of Pittsburgh has been doing extensive core drilling and surveying in the Roundup
area. Land for the stock piling of coal and loading area for railroad unit
trains has been leased from the town of Roundup, A plan for reclamation of strip-
ped land has been submitted for licensing to the Commissioner of State Lands
and Investments. An initial 60,000 tons is to be mined for test burning. If
this proves satisfactory, a contract will be awarded. The first contract will
be for approximately 500,000 tons per year, but this may develop to 2 to 3
million tons per year.

There is one possible deterrent to the industry and that is based on the
objections of environmentalists to a strip mining operation^ A group of approx-
imately 10 ranchers in the proposed area, and environmentalists in the Billings
area have been very active in trying to get a 5 year moratorium on mining oper-
ations or to stop them altogether, A hearing related to the granting of a license
to Consolidated Coal Co. to mine coal was held in Roundup on June 19. This Con-
certed Services Coordinator was requested to represent the retail merchants at
this hearing to present their reasons for supporting the Consolidated Coal Co.
in establishing a coal operation here. The main reason for their interest is
the much needed economic boost. However, they emphasized that they are concerned
about land reclamation and are confident that the ranchers and coal operation
can perform simultaneously in the area. This confidence was realized from a
careful study of the June 11 Reclamation Plan submitted by the Consolidated
Coal Co. and also from a report by a committee composed of representatives of the


Online LibraryMusselshell Valley Development CorpRoundup, Montana, Musselshell County : annual report 1970-71 (Volume 1971) → online text (page 1 of 2)