At Rialto in Bozeman, Tester Talks Impact of American Rescue Plan on Small Businesses, Highlights Strong Economic Recovery

Senator: “Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, Montana’s unemployment rate has dropped to 3.6 percent and the U.S. economy added more than 850,000 jobs last month”

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today visited the Rialto in Bozeman to discuss the impact of the American Rescue Plan-the most recent COVID relief bill-on Gallatin County and how it is helping Montana’s economy make a strong recovery in the twilight of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, Montana’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.6 percent and the U.S. economy added more than 850,000 last month.

Tester was joined by Rialto Co-Owner Eric Nelson, Rialto General Manager Matthew Beehler, Bozeman Mayor Cyndy Andrus, and Gallatin Community Health Officer Lori Christenson to provide an update on how the American Rescue Plan continues to provide critical relief to Bozeman and the Gallatin County small businesses, workers, schools, and public health officials, including access to free vaccines for everyone eligible.

“Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, Montana’s unemployment rate has dropped to 3.6 percent and the U.S. economy added more than 850,000 jobs last month, outpacing economists’ projections,” said Tester. “More than half of eligible folks in Gallatin are fully vaccinated, which is enormous progress from where we were just months ago-but we need to keep getting shots in arms as quickly as possible so our state can fully recover from this crisis. The bottom line is that the American Rescue Plan is working, and workers, schools, small businesses, and local communities are seeing the benefits as our economy rebounds.”

Tester was the only member of the Montana delegation to support the American Rescue Plan. He worked tirelessly to ensure the COVID relief bill provided targeted resources that will have a tangible impact on Montana’s economy and ensure that anyone who wants a vaccine can get one-especially those who bravely served our country. The bill ensures local mayors have the resources to keep cops and firefighters on the beat, every Montanan who wants a vaccine can get one, schools can fully re-open safely, and it provides badly-needed relief for hard-hit Montana workers and small businesses, along with fulfilling former President Trump’s promise of $2,000 in direct payments for every American earning less than $75,000.

The American Rescue Plan included:


  • $12.7 million in funding projected for the City of Bozeman and $22 million in projected funding for Gallatin County
  • $20 billion for vaccines
  • $1,400 checks for Montanans who make less than $75,000 a year-a bipartisan policy endorsed by former President Trump.
  • Tester’s legislation to restore full, long-distance Amtrak service on routes like the Empire Builder and reinstate furloughed employees
  • $60 billion for existing and new COVID relief programs to aid a wider range of small businesses, particularly in the hospitality, travel, and entertainment industries, including $25 billion for a new grant program tailored to local restaurants
  • $382 million for K-12 schools in Montana
  • $94.4 million for Montana higher education institutions
  • $8.5 billion for rural hospitals
  • $31.2 billion for Tribal COVID response, vaccine distribution, and emergency housing and social services in Indian Country
  • Millions for Montana airports and transit agencies
  • $750 million in dedicated funding for the hardest hit travel, tourism, or outdoor recreation businesses