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Montana school funding from trust land totals $57M

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Chris Woodward

(The Center Square) – Montana's public schools are getting $57 million from the state via trust land, officials announced.

The funding comes from revenue from the Montana State Trust Land and will be allocated to the state's Office of Public Instruction.

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Montana Governor Greg Gianforte called the funding amount "historic" in a statement.

"Thanks to [the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation’s] responsible management of State Trust Lands, we’re able to make a historic $57 million investment in the future of our state through Montana’s public education system," he said. "This investment will help ensure our students have the resources they need to succeed and reach their full potential."

Of the $57 million, $48.2 million went to the state's Common Schools Fund and $9 million went to the School Facility and Technology Fund, the governor's office said.

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"In Montana, schools and other public institutions are funded in part by revenue generated from certain state-owned lands – those state lands are Trust Land," the state's website says. "Montana state trust lands are working lands. These lands are held in trust for the perpetual yield of revenues to support Montana’s public education institutions."

DNRC Deputy Administrator of State Trust Lands Ryan Weiss said the department "is committed to ensuring that these lands continue to provide benefit for present and future generations."