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Montana can thank Kurt Alme
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Montana can thank Kurt Alme

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Kurt Alme deserves our thanks.

The Miles City native has a remarkable record of accomplishment over his more than three years as Montana's United States Attorney.

We applaud his focus on methamphetamine-related crime and his all-out effort to reduce trafficking of a drug that has decimated our state.

We're grateful, too, for his role in attacking crime on Native American reservations, including cases involving Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons.

He took a big step in hiring the country's first MMIP coordinator. The position has brought federal resources into play in assisting lead law enforcement agencies in MMIP cases.

Project Safe Neighborhoods, his anti-methamphetamine initiative, has prosecuted more than 670 cases statewide, including nearly 300 in Yellowstone County, where 333 pounds of methamphetamine and 343 firearms have been seized.

Alme has been a collaborator, working with local law enforcement and state officials to fight meth. And until COVID-19, his efforts appeared to be bearing fruit, reducing violent crime before the pandemic began to push the statistics in the other direction.

Alme was also aware and supportive of treatment and prevention programs as the best long-term hope to reduce meth's toll.

The job of United States Attorney is multifaceted. In filling all aspects of the role, Alme was uncompromising in his battle to make the state safer and get federal criminals off the streets.

As he segues into another important role — budget director in Gov.-elect Greg Gianforte's administration — it's appropriate to take a moment and say thanks for a job well done.

The Billings Gazette Editorial Board includes President and Publisher Dave Worstell, Regional Editor David McCumber, and Chief Photographer Larry Mayer.

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