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Foster Grandparents offer emotional support to children who have been abused and neglected, mentor troubled teenagers and young mothers, and care for premature infants and children with disabilities. In the process, these caring folks build bridges across generations while providing youth services that community budgets cannot afford.
Foster Grandparents receive:
In addition to these benefits, the program gives participants the opportunity to share a lifetime of experience with youth. Our Foster Grandparents join a half-million older Americans who are strengthening communities across the country as members of the National Senior Service Corps.
Foster Grandparents must meet income eligibility requirements and be at least 55 years of age. They are required to participate in pre-service orientation and training workshops throughout their service.
We do not have a list at this time. The FDA has provided Emergency Use Authorization for the first doses, and those will be given to our most at-risk healthcare workers. We are making plans to provide the vaccine to the general public once more doses are available. When we know more, we will provide more details on our website, social media, and other outlets.
Right now, vaccine doses are being given to our most at-risk healthcare workers. Once the vaccine is more widely available, there are just a few restrictions set for each vaccine.
Anyone who is allergic to the ingredients should not get the vaccine. Also, if you have an allergic reaction to the first does of the vaccine, you should not get a second dose.
Pfizer COVID-19 Ingredients
The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine includes the following ingredients: mRNA, lipids ((4-hydroxybutyl)azanediyl)bis(hexane-6,1-diyl)bis(2-hexyldecanoate), 2 [(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide, 1,2-Distearoyl-sn-glycero-3- phosphocholine, and cholesterol), potassium chloride, monobasic potassium phosphate, sodium chloride, dibasic sodium phosphate dihydrate, and sucrose. Food and environmental allergies will not prevent you from getting the Pfizer vaccine.
FDA Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers – Pfizer
Moderna COVID-19 Ingredients
Each dose of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine contains 100 mcg of nucleosidemodified messenger RNA (mRNA), a total lipid content of 1.93 mg (SM-102, polyethylene glycol [PEG] 2000 dimyristoyl glycerol [DMG], cholesterol, and 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine [DSPC]), 0.31 mg tromethamine, 1.18 mg tromethamine hydrochloride, 0.043 mg acetic acid, 0.12 mg sodium acetate, and 43.5 mg sucrose.
FDA Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers – Moderna
The FDA has reviewed all safety data from the vaccine trials and has set an Emergency Use Authorization for the COVID-19 vaccine.
The COVID-19 vaccines were tested to make sure they meet safety standards. Many people volunteered in trials to see how the vaccines would work with people of different ages, races, and ethnicities. The trials also tested people with different medical conditions.
The FDA and CDC will continue to monitor the safety of the vaccine, to make sure even long-term side effects are documented. If there are safety concerns, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) will work to solve any issues.
Because COVID-19 is so new, the possibility for long-term health issues is unknown at this point.
Both the Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines require two (2) doses. The first dose helps the immune system recognize the virus, and the second dose strengthens the body’s response to the virus.
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines do not work together. That means if you get the Pfizer vaccine first, your second dose must also be Pfizer – you cannot get the Pfizer vaccine first and Moderna vaccine second.
Both Pfizer and Moderna will provide you with a card after your first vaccine that will show you when you need your second dose.
Both this disease and the vaccine are new, and scientists continue to learn about the virus that causes COVID-19 and how to stop the spread. We do not know for sure how long protection lasts for those who get infected versus those who are vaccinated. But, what we do know is that COVID-19 has caused very serious illness and death for a lot of people. If you get COVID-19, you also risk giving it to loved ones who may get very sick.
The Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines were tested in large trials done on thousands of volunteers. So far, studies show that immunity from the vaccine seems to last longer than immunity from fighting the natural virus.
It is still recommended that you practice critical public health protocols even after receiving the vaccine.
Yes, but maybe not right away. If you have had COVID-19, you will need to wait at least 90 days before getting the vaccine. The reason is that natural infection immunity seems to wear out after two to three months. We are hoping that the vaccine will provide longer lasting immunity. So far, the antibody responses to the vaccine seem to last longer than the antibody responses to natural infection.
You should tell the person giving you your COVID-19 vaccination if you have any of the following:
The most common side effects are listed below. These are signs your immune system is working the way it is supposed to work, and that you are building up protection against COVID-19. Any of these symptoms will typically go away within a week. If you have any of these side effects that don’t go away on their own after a week, be sure to contact your primary care physician.
No. None of the COVID-19 vaccines currently being developed in the United States have the virus that causes COVID-19 in them. If you happen to get infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after you received the vaccine, you could still get COVID-19. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection from the virus.
Sometimes people get a fever or feel tired for a day or so after getting a vaccine. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building immunity. It usually takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination.
No. The COVID-19 vaccines will not cause you to test positive on a viral test (like a swab test) that looks for current COVID-19 infection. You may test positive on an antibody test, this is because one of the ways that vaccines work is to teach your body to make antibodies.
No. The unique nature of COVID-19 has required a unique response when it comes to a vaccine. Moderna and Pfizer have created a vaccine which uses messenger RNA (mRNA). A nucleic acid, mRNA is responsible for guiding how your body responds to an invading organism like this virus. In action, the Moderna and Pfizer vaccinations will allow mRNA to create the antibodies necessary to defend the virus that causes COVID-19 without the need to inject virus particles into the body.
No. You will still need to follow the critical public health protocols until public health officials say otherwise.
The federal government has established the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund (PHSSEF). This will help make sure the COVID-19 vaccine is distributed free of charge to providers around the state. Some providers may or may not charge a fee when administering the vaccine to you. More information will be known about the cost and fees of the vaccine by the end of January 2021.
Yes, eventually there will be enough of the COVID-19 vaccines for everyone who wants it. The CDC is coordinating with federal, private, and state partners to administer the vaccines as promptly as possible. The Montana Department of Health and Human Services (DPHHS) received federal guidance from the CDC and created a phased approach to vaccine distribution. DPHHS has deputized local distributors to build vaccine capacity locally. Currently, Montana is in phase 1A; as more vaccines become available, we will move into future phases.
HIV is the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It is the virus that causes AIDS. Over time, HIV gradually weakens that body’s ability to fight disease. HIV makes it easier to get many infections and cancers that would not normally occur in a healthy person. HIV is life-threatening.
HIV can be spread in several ways. People can get HIV by having unprotected sexual intercourse with someone who is HIV infected. HIV can be transmitted by sharing needles with someone who is HIV infected. If a mother has HIV it can be passed to her baby, either at birth or through breastfeeding. HIV can also be spread through accidental needle sticks and, though rare, through infected blood during blood transfusions. You cannot get HIV from:
Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is the late stage of HIV infection. Having AIDS means that the HIV virus has caused severe damage to the body’s immune system.
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the virus that causes AIDS. HIV makes copies of itself by slowly killing a type of immune cell, the CD4 cell. Over time, this weakens the immune system.
As a result, a person may develop a serious disease called "opportunistic infections." These occur as a sign of later-stage HIV disease called Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). A person with HIV can also be diagnosed with AIDS when the number of their CD4 cells falls to 200 or below. HIV treatments can delay the onset of AIDS for many years.
No, condoms are not 100% effective at preventing HIV transmission; however, when used correctly and consistently, condoms are highly effective and reliable in reducing the risk of transmitting and acquiring HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). The surest way to avoid the sexual transmission of HIV (and other STDs) is to abstain from sex.
The following are behaviors that increase your chances of getting HIV. If you answer "yes" to any of them, you should definitely get an HIV test. If you continue with any of these behaviors, you should get tested every year. Talk to a health care provider about an HIV testing schedule that is right for you.
If you have had sex with someone whose history of sex partners and/or drug use is unknown to you, or if you or your partner has had many sex partners, then you have more of a chance of being infected with HIV. Both you and your new partner should get tested for HIV, and learn the results, before having sex for the first time.
For women who plan to become pregnant, testing is even more important. If a woman is infected with HIV, medical care and certain drugs given during pregnancy can lower the chance of passing HIV to her baby. All women who are pregnant should be tested during each pregnancy.
Once HIV enters the body, the immune system starts to produce antibodies-chemicals that are part of the immune system that recognize invaders like bacteria and viruses and mobilize the body’s attempt to fight infection. In the case of HIV, these antibodies cannot fight off the infection, but their presence is used to tell whether a person has HIV in his or her body. In other words, most HIV tests look for HIV antibodies rather than looking for HIV itself. There are tests that look for HIVs genetic material directly, but these are not in widespread use.
The most common HIV tests use blood to detect HIV infection. Tests using saliva or urine are also available. Some tests take a few days for results, but rapid HIV tests can give results in about 20 minutes. All positive HIV tests must be followed up by another test to confirm the positive result. The results of this confirmatory test can take a few days to a few weeks.
In most cases the enzyme immunoassay (EIA) used on blood drawn from a vein, is the most common screening test used to look for antibodies to HIV. A positive (reactive) EIA must be used with a follow-up (confirmatory) test, such as the Western blot, to make a positive diagnosis. There are EIA tests that use other body fluids to look for antibodies to HIV. These include:
Oral fluid tests use oral fluid (not saliva) that is collected from the mouth using a special collection device. This is an EIA antibody test similar to the standard blood EIA test. A follow-up confirmatory Western blot uses the same oral fluid sample.
Urine tests use urine instead of blood. The sensitivity and specificity (accuracy) are somewhat less than that of the blood and oral fluid tests. This is also an EIA antibody test similar to blood EIA tests and requires a follow-up Western blot using the same urine sample.
A rapid test is a screening test that produces very quick results, in approximately 20 minutes. Rapid tests use oral fluid or blood from a vein or finger stick to look for the presence of antibodies to HIV. As is true for all screening tests, a reactive rapid HIV test result must be confirmed with a follow-up confirmatory test before a final diagnosis can be made. These tests have similar accuracy rates as traditional EIA screening tests.
Consumer-controlled test kits (popularly known as "home testing kits") were first licensed in 1997. Although home HIV tests are sometimes advertised through the internet, currently the Home Access HIV-1 Test System is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) - the accuracy of other home test kits cannot be verified. Each kit comes with specific instructions on how to collect a sample, how to send it to an accredited laboratory, and how to receive test results. Every part of the process is done anonymously.
Customers may speak to a counselor before taking the test, while waiting for the test result and when the results are given. All individuals receiving a positive test result are provided referrals for a follow-up confirmatory test, as well as information and resources on treatment and support services. The Home Access HIV-1 Test System can be found at most local drug stores and online.
RNA tests look for the genetic material of the virus and can be used in screening the blood supply and for the detection of rare very early infection cases when antibody tests are unable to detect antibodies to HIV.
Most HIV tests are antibody tests that measure the antibodies your body makes against HIV. It can take some time for the immune system to produce enough antibodies for the antibody test to detect, and this time period can vary from person to person. This time period is commonly referred to as the "window period." Most people will develop detectable antibodies within two to eight weeks (the average is 25 days). Even so, there is a chance that some individuals will take longer to develop detectable antibodies.
Therefore, if the initial negative HIV test was conducted within the first three months after possible exposure, repeat testing should be considered more than three months after the exposure occurred to account for the possibility of a false-negative result. 97% of persons will develop antibodies in the first three months following the time of their infections. In very rare cases, it can take up to six months to develop antibodies to HIV.
No. Your HIV test result reveals only your HIV status. Your negative test result does not indicate whether or not your partner has HIV. HIV is not necessarily transmitted every time you have sex. Therefore, your taking an HIV test should not be seen as a method to find out if your partner is infected. Ask your partner if he or she has been tested for HIV and what risk behaviors he or she has engaged in, both currently and in the past. Think about getting tested together.
It is important to take steps to reduce your risk of getting HIV. Not having (abstaining from) sex is the most effective way to avoid HIV. If you choose to be sexually active, having sex with one person, who only has sex with you and who is uninfected, is also effective.
If you are not sure that both you and your partner are HIV negative, use a latex condom to help protect both you and your partner from HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Studies have shown that latex condoms are very effective, though not 100%, in preventing HIV transmission with used correctly and consistently. If either partner is allergic to latex, plastic (polyurethane) condoms for either the male or female can be used.
There are several reasons that you should get tested for HIV:
The Clerk and Recorder’s Office is open from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. For more information, please visit Burn Permits.
A child support payment history may be obtained by sending an inquiry to the Clerk of Court or by calling 406-454-6780. Payments are processed the day they are received. If you have recently changed your residence or mailing address, be sure to advise the court in writing so your future checks will be mailed accordingly. If you failed to notify us of your new address and you are concerned that a check may have been mailed to an old address, please contact us by phone 406-454-6780.
You may reach The Clerk of Court’s Office by calling (406)-454-6780 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Supervision fees and felony restitution fees are paid through State offices in Helena. Their contact information is 800-801-3478. The mailing address is: Dept of Corrections, Collection Unit, PO Box 201350 Helena, MT 59620. The payment must include your name, your Department of Corrections (DOC) ID No.(AO#12345), and the name of your current Probation/Parole/ISP Officer.
Only criminal fines and misdemeanor restitution payments are payable through the Clerk of Court.
This office can provide that information by phone at 406-454-6788.
The Office of Public Defenders in Cascade County may be reached by calling (406) 770-3200 and is located at 615 2nd Ave North, 3rd Floor.
No. (With the exception of the Asbestos Claims Court which requires electronic filing.)
Yes. You may open a civil name change case with a fee of $120. A name change packet is available from the Self-Help Law Center located at 13 6th Street South, (406) 205-0347, or from the Forms Section at www.courts.mt.gov/forms. Adults must publish in a newspaper for the statutorily required time but there is no publication requirement for a minor name change if both parents file a consent.
If the names of multiple children in one family are being changed, a separate petition must be filed for each child.
Documentation is available on-line through the State Law Library at www.courts.mt.gov/forms or through the Self-Help Law Center located at 13 6th Street South, (406) 205-0347. A completed petition may be filed with the Clerk of District Court along with the required $120 fee. A hearing must be conducted.
Construction and Mechanic’s liens are filed with the Clerk & Recorder.
City of Great Falls Municipal Court
Cascade County Justice Court
You may file a petition with a limited court or the District Court; you must file with only the District Court if you have a dissolution matter pending. There is no fee. You may also contact Victim-Witness Assistance Services office for more information.
Submit a signed letter or pleading to this office requesting the judge to remove the Order and your reason. You will need to provide proof of identification at the Office of the Clerk of Court upon submission of your request.
Yes, we can fax or email copies of any public record. A fee of $.25 per page must be paid in advance, however.
You must contact the Cascade County Sheriff’s Department for warrant information.
Cascade County Clerk & Recorder’s Office located at 121 4th Street North Suite 1B-1.
Traffic tickets and citations are all handled by the courts of limited jurisdiction – Justice Court or Great Falls Municipal Court. The ticket or citation will list the name of the court and/or the name of the Judge
Litigants and/or their legal representative must be present in court at or prior to the scheduled date and time. All jurors must check in at the Clerk of Court prior to Juror Orientation.
Any party to a case or one’s legal representative may only have audience with the court at a scheduled hearing or attorney’s conference.
You may appear at our office personally, or you can mail your written request to: Clerk of Court, 415 2nd Ave North, Great Falls, MT 59401. You must include a self addressed stamped, return envelope, and a cahiers check or money order made payable to the Clerk of Court. Statutory fees vary depending upon the requested document; most photocopies are $1.00 per page for the first 10 pages and $.50 cents per page thereafter. A copy of a divorce decree is $10 (regardless of length), a copy of a marriage license is $5, and an additional $2 is required for certification of any document. We do not accept personal checks. Your copy and a receipt for the exact charge will be returned. Note: Confidential records require court ordered approval to open and provide copies. Please call to discuss procedure relative to requests for confidential documents (such as adoption matters). **Document Request Forms may be found in the Copies and Search Request Documents page.
You must complete and submit a juror affidavit requesting an excuse as soon as possible prior to trial (Affidavit For Excusal). The Court will consider your request to be excused and will notify you of the decision prior to trial..
Copies of Summons can be obtained by calling the Clerk of Court at 406-454-6780. Information regarding the current trial settings can be found by clicking this link, Jury.
Please review the Montana Codes Annotated, Title 40 – Family Law.
Yes. You can contact Justice Court to assist you with making an appointment.
Please review the Montana Codes Annotated, Title 40 – Family Law 40-1-311. Declaration of marriage without solemnization This section of the codes includes the requirements for drafting a Declaration of Marriage. Parties must complete a marriage application and must pay the required $53.00 fee to the Clerk of Court.
If a license has expired, it is invalid, and the couple must begin the process again by re-applying for another license. A new fee must be paid.
No. Marriage Licenses in Montana expire after 180 days from the issue date. The couple must begin the process again and reapply for another marriage license.
Until the license is filed , no record of your marriage exists, so you would only be considered married by common law – no paper trail. Please file the original license immediately. If it has been lost or destroyed, you must file a Declaration of Marriage; a new application process and fee will be required.
Marriage by proxy is when one or both parties to a marriage cannot be present at the ceremony. Section 40-1-301(2), MCA If a party to a marriage is unable to be present at the solemnization, the party may authorize in writing a third person to act as proxy. If the person solemnizing the marriage is satisfied that the absent party is unable to be present and has consented to the marriage, the person may solemnize the marriage by proxy. If the person solemnizing the marriage is not satisfied, the parties may petition the district court for an order permitting the marriage to be solemnized by proxy.
We can issue marriage licenses Monday-Friday from 8:00 to 11:30 a.m. and 1:00 to 4:30 p.m.
Most questions regarding passports and travel abroad are addressed by the US Passport website http://travel.state.gov
A passport application, instructions, and information as to documentation requirements can be obtained through the US Department of State http://travel.state.gov
We can accommodate passport applicants Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Each application process can take anywhere from 15 minutes to half an hour depending upon documentation available, proper fees, etc. Appointments are not necessary.
If the estate is worth less than $50K we have an affidavit form you may use. The opening of a probate may not be required if the estate does not exceed $50,000.00, but all assets must be held in joint tenancy. Should probating the estate be necessary, the filing fee is $100, and you must either consult a licensed attorney or represent yourself. The Self-Help Law Center (406-205-0347) may be of assistance in obtaining necessary forms or you may go here, How to be the Personal Representative for a Small Estate for directions and necessary forms to open a probate in the State of Montana.
If the tip you provided resulted in an arrest being made you may call the CRIMSTOPPERS Tip Line at 727-TIPS on the second Friday of each month, provide your "caller ID number" and be informed whether or not your tip received a reward. If your tip did receive an award you will be given instructions for picking-up the reward at a local banking institution.
There could be several reasons why you did not receive a reward. The information although very good may need more investigation before an arrest and the reward may come later. Another reason may be the person may have already been arrested just prior to your tip or the person could not be located.
It is very important you retain the issued "caller ID number", as this is the only way to receive a reward. If a caller becomes a frequent caller and uses the same "caller ID number" the information received may develop a pattern of being reliable thus increasing the possible rewards.
The recommendations of reward values are made by the arresting officers based on many factors that may include, but are not limited to, the location and description of suspects, vehicles driven, friends and associates, work locations, other family members, location of evidence, witnesses, and description of activities or crimes.
If you would like to provide a tip please call 727-TIPS (727-8477).
Contact Penny Simkins with the Quality Assurance Division in Helena for licensing requirements. Her phone number is 406-444-3074. If the daycare will have more than 12 children, City-Community Health Department will also be involved in the plan review process.
Anytime food or beverage is served to the public (with or without a charge) a state food license, temporary food service permit, or cottage food registration must be obtained. The only exceptions to this rule are non-profits that serve less than 4 days per year, and people that serve items that are commercially prepackaged which do not require refrigeration like canned soda, bags of chips, wrapped candy, etcetera. If the items are open, or if they must be kept cold or hot for safety, a license must be obtained.
It depends on what you are doing, but for the most part it is always good to touch base with the following to ensure that you don’t have any surprises:
Within the city limits of Great Falls:
County/Outside the city limits of Great Falls:
Many places! You can find any of our plan review applications on our website. You can call Environmental Health Division at 406-454-6950 to have one mailed to you. And of course, you can drop by the CCHD office at 115 4th St S, Great Falls to pick one up in person.
Plan review really is just what it sounds like—a review of your plan. For you, it’s putting your ideas to paper to show that you have everything you need to operate safely and within the rules.
For us, it’s a tool and a service we provide to you. When you turn in your application, we look at whether or not you have the equipment you need to make the menu items you want to offer. Then we look at how the equipment, sinks, hoods, and other spaces work in the facility. Is there ventilation where it needs to be? Are the hand sinks in the right places so that crucial hand washes aren’t missed? Is there enough storage space? Have you located everything so that dirty tasks do not influence food prep areas of the kitchen? The plan review process allows us to interact with you early, develop a relationship, give you pointers, and make sure the facility supports what you are doing before you sink money into it and have make costly changes.
The entire submittal requires the CCHD plan review application, a floor plan with the equipment layout, plumbing and ventilation information, spec sheets on all equipment, a finish schedule, and the proposed menu. Floor plans do not need to be professionally done, but they do need to be neatly sketched scale drawings that are clearly labeled. We recommend using graph paper or layout design software or apps. Equipment spec sheets are preferred, but model numbers are accepted. Bear in mind that model numbers may not give us the information we need to approve the equipment and it may result in delays or us not being unable to approve the unit. The finish schedule can be listed on the floor plans or written in the application packet. Make sure all of the information is included and clear, otherwise your project may be delayed.
Wow… this is a really tough question to answer. Reason being, there is no one size fits all kitchen. The kitchen requirements can vary significantly depending on menu, operation, and volume of food. Think about it… different foods and cooking processes require different kinds of equipment. Different kinds of equipment require different types of plumbing, ventilation, and different amounts of space. Also, different processes may require less equipment, space, sinks than another. However—don’t despair! We can give you the most basic spring board from which to launch.
All kitchens need the following:
It depends on the type of facility and risk category. Mobile Food Establishment (MFE) reviews cost less than standard Retail Food Establishment (RFE) reviews, as they are smaller, have less equipment, and have smaller menus. Low risk category 1 & 2 RFE reviews cost less than high risk category 3 & 4 reviews, as they are less complex and require less time to review. Refer to the Food Service Fee Schedule to view the current plan review fees and other fees associated with food service.
Warning! We charge a $200 expedited review fee if you submit your plan review application less than 30 days from intended open date. Applications should be submitted at least 30 days prior to any construction/remodel or at least 30 days prior to the anticipated open date (if no construction/remodel) so we have sufficient time to review.
Additionally, we charge a $50 hourly rate for reviews that exceed the base rate time (listed next to fees in applications). If there are application deficiencies that require repeated follow up or gaps in information that require us to spend time researching, the review may go over the allotted base rate time. Be sure your application is complete, legible, and accurate, and that all required documents are submitted with the application. This will make the review process quicker, easier, and potentially less expensive.
Establishments are licensed by DPHHS, but the review and preopening inspection are completed by CCHD. Therefore, the fee for the review and preopening inspection goes to CCHD. Once the preopening inspection is complete and we approve the establishment to open, the license fee must be paid to DPHHS. A portion of the annual license fee covers DPHHS operational costs, while the rest is reimbursed to CCHD upon completion of the annual inspection.
No, they are not transferable. Licenses are specific to an owner and location. If there is a change of ownership or the business moves to a new location, a new license must be obtained. Plan review is required to obtain the new license.
We make sure the establishment is constructed/remodeled as specified in the approved plan and that all conditions in the approval are met. Have everything on, at temperature, setup, and surfaces finished as though you are going to serve your first customer the moment the inspector leaves. There should be no equipment missing, not hooked up, or construction going on still. Use the preopening checklist to make sure you have everything in place. The checklist is contained within the plan review application.
Retail Food Establishments (RFE) in Cascade County are generally inspected 1 to 2 times per year. Low risk facilities (risk category 1 & 2) usually have one routine inspection, while high risk facilities (risk category 3 & 4) usually have two. Risk categories are based on the types of food served, the types of cooking processes, the clients served, and inspection history. For example, a convenience store that only sells commercially prepared packaged foods would be low risk, while a full-service restaurant that prepares raw animal foods using complex cooking processes would be high risk. A chart with descriptions of the risk categories can be found in the Fee Schedule.
All Retail Food Establishments (RFE) and Wholesale Food Establishments (WFE) must have one manager or supervisor that is a Certified Food Protection Manager (CFPM). These courses are typically 8 hours long and provide in-depth food safety training. Course topics include personal hygiene, foodborne illness prevention, purchasing and receiving foods, cleaning and sanitizing, safe food preparation, pest control, and facilities and equipment. We highly recommend having more than one CFPM. Having a CFPM available every shift has been shown to reduce food safety violations. Multiple CFPMs also decreases your chance of being without a CFPM should one of them leave your employment. The Registered Environmental Health Specialist (REHS) reviewing your application may exempt you from this requirement if you are a risk category 1 RFE or risk category A/B WFE and determined to be very low risk operation (e.g., convenience store that only sells packaged foods or concession stand that sells candy and popcorn). The REHS will let you know if you meet the exemption.
Food service staff are not required to have food handler cards or certificates. However, these classes are a great training tool. They are very inexpensive (typically around $10) and are typically only 2-4 hours long.
Go to the Food Safey Classes page under the Food Service menu to find information on accredited CFPM and Food Handler courses.
You need a lot of different sinks for a lot of different purposes. All Retail Food Establishments and Wholesale Food Establishments must have an air-gapped 3-compartment sink for warewashing. A 3-compartment sink is still required even if you have a dishwasher. If the dishwasher breaks, the 3-compartment sink ensures you can still properly clean and sanitizer your dishes.
You must have a designated handwashing sink in all food prep, service, and dishwashing areas. 3-compartment sinks, prep sinks, and dump sinks cannot be used for handwashing. This ensures a handwashing sink is always available and not being used for other purposes.
Using residential equipment in a commercial facility is like using a knife blade to tighten a screw; while it may work initially, sooner or later you’ll get to the point where it doesn’t, or it becomes unsafe. The commercial equipment requirement is to ensure you have the right equipment for your situation. For example, commercial refrigerators are larger with shelves intended to accommodate larger containers, they have larger compressors and fans to quickly cool and circulate air, and surfaces are smooth, durable, and corrosion resistant. Residential units have smaller compressors and don’t typically have fans to circulate air, they have less storage space, and they often have surfaces made of plastic or glass that do not hold up well in a commercial kitchen (breaking and chipping can be a hazard).
The NSF certification assures that equipment has been tested and meets public health standards. Other agencies such as UL, ETL, and CE also evaluate and test commercial equipment using equivalent sanitation and health standards. Specification sheets (spec sheets) indicate the intended use and any certifications your equipment has. Providing spec sheets in your plan review allows us easily to determine if your equipment meets standards and is appropriate for your intended use.
Unless your establishment is going to be connected to a septic system, our department does not make this determination. If you will be operating within the City of Great Falls, the Public Works Environmental Division will determine if you need a grease interceptor or grease trap. You can contact the Sector Control Compliance Technician at (406) 727-8390. You can find additional information and resources on their website and in the FOG Manual. If you will be operating outside of Great Falls, you'll need to contact the wastewater operator for your municipality or public water and sewer district.
Our department does not have the ability to inspect homes for mold. We recommend contacting a mold inspection and removal company in the local yellow pages.
We have radon test kits available here at the health department for $20. Results are mailed following the sampling period with explanations provided.
In October 2005, state of Montana enacted a law prohibiting smoking in all public establishments with exemptions for bars, casinos, hotels, motels and restaurants. These establishments have until October 1, 2009 to comply to the new law.
Better Beginnings is a healthy pregnancy program where pregnant women can access assistance for a variety of services helping them to have a healthy baby:
Call Better Beginnings at 406-454-6950.
Call 406-454-6953 or 406-452-0881, ext. 304 to make an appointment for a car seat fitting.
No, the health department does not provide prenatal care. Call Better Beginnings and they will help you get connected to the health care system.
No, the health department does not provide insurance but Better Beginnings staff will assess your income to see if you qualify for Medicaid.
Yes, Better Beginnings assists clients to get baby supplies.
Yes, through the Community Health Care Center, we have a full time dentist on site. Call us at 406-791-9267.
Call the health department at 406-454-6950 and ask for a Family Services Public Health Nurse and enroll in Parents as Teachers. The nurse can assess your child and provide information about where your child should be for their age and provide parent/child interaction activities.
You will need:
Early prenatal care is important. It is best to see an OB within the first 3 months of pregnancy.
Early prenatal care, balanced nutrition, fresh air and exercise, avoid drugs, alcohol and tobacco, lots of water, healthy relationships, and a positive mental attitude. For more information, you can talk with one of our staff if you have specific questions.
We have a program called Parents As Teachers that provides child development information and parenting support. Contact us to get signed up in the program.
We have nurses that will visit and weigh your baby in the home. We also teach you about shaken baby syndrome and safe sleep with babies.
For information on burn permits, contact the Sheriff’s Department at 406-454-6820, ext. 650.
Visit the Montana Department of Environmental Quality website.
Yes, Cascade County Zoning Regulations (CCZR) requires all signs, structures, foundations, buildings, and changes of use to obtain a permit with Cascade County Planning Department, as mention in CCZR §9.2.1 under Permits Authorized:
Pursuant to MCA §76-2-207, a Location/Conformance Permit shall be required for all proposed buildings, structures, signs, land uses, and changes in land use within the Zoning Jurisdictional Area except where exempted under Section 9.2.3. Legal Location/Conformance Permits shall be approved and authorized by the Zoning Administrator. A separate Location/Conformance Permit shall be issued for each tract of land and for each distinct use in a project proposal.
Pursuant to MCA §76-2-207, a Location/Conformance Permit shall be required for all proposed buildings, structures, signs, land uses, and changes in land use within the Zoning Jurisdictional Area except where exempted under Section 9.2.3. Legal Location/Conformance Permits shall be approved and authorized by the Zoning Administrator. A separate Location/Conformance Permit shall be issued for each tract of land and for each distinct use in a project proposal.
Yes, Cascade County Zoning Regulations (CCZR) requires businesses, signs, structures, foundations, buildings, and changes of use to obtain a permit with Cascade County Planning Department, as mention in CCZR §8-10.
To find more information on regulations regarding signs in Cascade County, please check our Cascade County Zoning Regulations §8.1 "Uses, Signs, Lots".
No, Cascade County Planning Department does not enforce building codes. Building Codes are enforced by the Building Codes Program (BC Programs is a part of the Commercial Measurements Bureau within the Montana Department of Labor & Industry’s Business Standards Division). The Cascade County Planning Department is responsible for the administration and enforcement of the County’s:
In addition, the Planning Department oversees road abandonments, conflicts, and questions regarding land use and land use regulations, junk vehicle removal and disposal, as well as assist in the administration of the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Adjustment.
No, Cascade County Planning Department does not issue a Certificate of Occupancy.
One can check if a property is in compliance by submitting a Determination Request form. This form provides the Planning Department the relevant information that they need in order to help fulfill your inquiry. Please see the Forms & Permit Application page on our website or click the Determination Request form.
One can check if they can build or start a business on a piece of property by submitting a Determination Request form. This form provides the Planning Department the relevant information that they need in order to help fulfill your inquiry. Please see the Forms & Permit Application page on our website or click the Determination Request form.
You can submit a Citizen Complaint form to the Planning Department. Once a formal Complaint form is made, the Planning Department will investigate any allegations to determine whether the alleged property is in violation or not. If a violation has been found, the Department will notify the property owner(s) in writing of the violation and work with the property owner(s) to come into compliance.
You can have your junk vehicle(s) removed by submitting the following completed form:
You can find a list of recommended plants for landscaping by contacting Montana State University Extension Services: Extension Horticulture.
Montana State UniversityP.O. Box 172230Bozeman, MT 59717-223
Yes, adolescents are welcome to call the Quit Line at 800-QUIT-NOW. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved nicotine replacement therapy for persons under 18 so they are not eligible for that benefit.
No, the individual may have as many calls as needed to quit and stay quit. The research indicates that five sessions is the optimal number for telephone cessation counseling. Individuals who relapse are also encouraged to call the Quit Line at 800-QUIT-NOW. Studies show that individuals will quit several times before they stay quit.
Four weeks of Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) (gum, patches, or lozenges) is mailed directly to the individual.
National Jewish Medical and Research Center in Denver, ranked the nation’s Number 1 respiratory hospital by U.S. News and World Report, operates the Montana Tobacco Quit Line. National Jewish also operates the Colorado and Ohio Tobacco Quit Lines, as well as the UCare Tobacco Cessation Line in Minnesota and the nationwide LungLine.
Our permitting process for septic systems began in the late 1960s. If your septic system was installed after that, we may have it in our records, but it can sometimes be difficult to find if addresses have changed. To help us locate it, we have a Septic Information Request Form (PDF) to fill out that makes our search much quicker and easier.
We recommend calling a certified septic installer as soon as possible. They are familiar with the local regulations and can usually begin the repairs quickly. If a new tank or drain field is needed, a septic permit will be required. Contact our office before the work is started.
Yes. However, there is a higher permit fee to offset additional Sanitarian time and site visits that are often required when inexperienced individuals do their own installations.
These are no longer issued through our office. They can be picked up at the Commissioner’s office.
The junk vehicle and community decay program is now run by the Planning Department. Call them at 406-454-6905.
Yes, you can.
Yes, you can as long as both items are WIC approved.
The baby can be re-certified at age one and can stay on until age five with certifications every six months.
You can stay on as a WIC participant for six months past the date of miscarriage.
No, the $16 per WIC participant is good for the whole Farmers Market season but is given only one time.
A full formula package is 8 or 9 cans depending on the size of the can and the type of formula and you are expected to buy extra formula because WIC is supplemental program.
Check the food banks or see if you qualify for Food Stamps, local churches and other community resources.
Depending on the age of your child, or if there are concerns about yourself or your child’s weight or health, it could be beneficial to come in monthly - but most of the time monthly visits are not necessary.
Yes, that person is chosen by you.
Yes, with a note of permission from you. If that person lives in the home and helps care for the child that person does not need a note. The person that is coming in to pick up checks will need to show identification.
Yes, if it is the least expensive milk at the store.
WIC checks can be cashed in any town in Montana that accepts WIC checks but Montana WIC checks cannot be cashed out of state.
WIC is available overseas and it is very easy to transfer your WIC with a Verification of Certification (VOC) that we will print for you in our office before you leave.
It does not meet the WIC nutritional standards.
Bring your power bill, land line, cable bill, or rental lease agreement with your current address on it. A general piece of mail will not work.
This means all income coming into the household (this means every person in the household) in which you live, including child support, unemployment benefits, and all revenue from your job. It has to be the most recent pay stubs for the last month. School loans don’t count. If you are living off your savings, you must bring in a bank statement showing the withdrawals.
Income needs to be brought to each certification unless we have seen it in the last 60 days. Proof of income is critical for re-certification and you will be rescheduled if not provided. It is also helpful to know if you get paid biweekly or twice a month. If you are self employed you can bring your most recent tax return. If you qualify for Medicaid or TANF, they will automatically qualify you for WIC.
Yes, we use gross income.
Your deductions and payments are not taken into consideration.
You can, and we have walk in days on Monday from 8 am to 5 pm and Thursdays from 9 am to 6 pm.
Yes, you will need a picture ID, social security number, and your name on the ID has to match your current name. If your name changes you will need to bring in a marriage license or a divorce decree.
Yes, this is where you keep your WIC checks and where we will write your appointments and anything you need to bring to your next visit.
Checks cannot be replaced if lost or stolen.
Babies do not have to weighed every time but always be prepared to change your baby into a dried diaper and be prepared to feed your baby as some appointments take longer.
No, but WIC is a nutrition education program and we will visit with you about your individual concerns.
Children do have to be brought to appointments periodically. Check the front of your green packet and it will tell you.
This process always starts at the County Planning Department. Their phone number is 406-454-6905. We also meet weekly with the county planners to determine which divisions of land are required by law to go through the subdivision review process, either through the Planning Department or Department of Environmental Quality, or both.