The news that Minnesota-based American Crystal would be closing down the Sidney Sugars sugar beet factory in Sidney, Montana rocked Eastern Montana. Can anything be done to save the facility? How can we help the workers in the meantime?

Montana Governor Greg Gianforte (R-MT) was on the ground in Sidney, Montana Wednesday night for a roundtable discussion with community leaders.

Gov. Gianforte: I wanted to go there and get on the ground and hear from the folks. And let me just say I was- there's a lot of grief in the community right now. People are still absorbing this news, but they share a resolve to grow stronger.

The Governor says the mayor, county commissioners, the school superintendent, a number of growers, a representative of Sidney Sugars, and the Job Service were all in attendance for the roundtable discussion. Right now, he says the state is surging job service personnel into Sidney to assist workers.

Gov. Gianforte: The good news is the ground that beets get planted in is along the river, it's irrigated, it's high production ground. And working with the farm extension offices we're looking at helping those farmers develop alternatives.

He also says that the economic development office is also looking at how the facility potentially be repurposed.

Gov. Gianforte: Richland County is resilient. They're going to get past this. The growers are going to get crops in the ground. They're going to come up, they're going to harvest them and they're going to bounce back


Here's the full audio of our conversation on Montana Talks with Aaron Flint:



The Governor also held a press conference on Thursday morning talking about concerns over CDL standards. Heres video of the press conference:

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