Congratulations to Attorney General Tim Fox for his 11 percent raise and new annual salary of $137,000. At the same time however, the budgets for the Montana Historical Society and the Montana State Library have been cut severely. The Historical Society is slated to lose $1.2 million in support over the next biennium, forcing the layoff of eight employees and curtailing the hours of many more. The Republican legislature could have avoided these cuts to basic services by instituting increased taxes on alcohol, cigarettes, and the bed tax, but they refused. Because of their inaction local libraries around the state will be forced to cut services and the primary work of documenting our state’s history and assisting local museums will suffer. Why are the salaries of some of Montana’s highest paid officials being afforded additional compensation while basic statewide programs are slashed?