2013 Mill Levy

Mountain Line Mill Levy Increase Request Prepared by the Missoula Urban Transit District

For the first time in more than 35 years, Mountain Line will be placing a mill levy increase on the November 2013 ballot. Voters will be asked to approve an increase in the mill levy that funds Missoula’s community bus service.

The mill levy increase is necessary to make improvements to meet community demand for Mountain Line bus service.

Specific improvements will be:

  1. Increased van service for seniors and people with disabilities.
  2. Regular bus service until 9:50 p.m. on four popular bus routes.
  3. Increased bus frequency on two high-use bus routes to reduce wait times.

The mill levy increase will raise $1.7 million annually, and will cost about $19 per year on a home valued at $100,000.

For 35 years Mountain Line, Missoula’s community bus service, has helped take employees to work, ensure that our seniors and people with disabilities can remain independent, and get students to campus. Mountain Line benefits the whole Missoula community by reducing the number of vehicle trips and by helping to reduce air pollution, as well as parking and traffic congestion. Mountain Line is dedicated to increasing its efficiency and meeting ridership demands for the coming years.


  • Missoula Urban Transportation District (MUTD), which operates Mountain Line, was created by the voters in June 1976 by more than a 2-to-1 margin. Mountain Line began service in December 1977, and the first full year of operations was 1978.
  • In the last 35 years, Mountain Line has provided more than 22 million rides.
  • Today, Mountain Line operates 12 bus routes in the Missoula area, in addition to six specialized vans that offer curb-to-curb service for senior and disabled residents. These services combined set a ridership record or nearly one million rides in 2012.
  • In 2012, to gain community input, Mountain Line held several public meetings as part of an extensive community planning process. The process indicated a community desire for improved bus services, including increased service for seniors and people with disabilities, late evening bus service, and more frequent bus service for reduced wait times.

Recent Improvements


  • In August 2012, Mountain Line started high-frequency bus service on Route 1 (now called “Bolt!”) between downtown Missoula, the University and Southgate Mall. Buses now run every 15 minutes to make commuting more convenient than ever before. In recent months, Route 1 has seen more than a 65 percent ridership increase.
  • Mountain Line partnered with Community Medical Center to provide free, on-board, 4G Wi-Fi service, as well as “real-time,” bus-tracking technology, so you know when the bus is nearing your stop.
  • Bike racks on all buses plus the Bike Den, a covered bike parking facility at the newly renovated Downtown Transfer Center, complete with a bike repair stand and tools.

Benefits of Mountain Line to the Missoula Community

    • Missoula’s Mountain Line provides convenient, safe and affordable public transportation. The current price of an adult fare on bus routes is $1. Senior and disabled residents ride for 50 cents and youth ride for 35 cents.
    • By reducing the numbers of car trips, Mountain Line buses help reduce air pollution, traffic and parking congestion.


  • Mountain Line provides specialized, curb-to-curb transportation service for seniors and residents with disabilities. Nearly 20,000 rides were provided with this important service in 2012, and this year ridership has increased 18 percent.
  • Mountain Line contributes to a healthy community — people who ride the bus get an average 19 minutes per day of physical activity walking or biking between bus stops. In 2012, Mountain Line buses carried nearly 30,000 bicycles for residents enjoying public transit as part of their journey.
  • Mountain Line provides free rides on unhealthy air quality days, helping reduce air pollution levels in the Missoula valley. Last year more than 25,000 passengers rode Mountain Line at no cost on the nine unhealthy air quality days.


For more information or to request a presentation, please contact Mountain Line General Manager
Michael Tree: 543-8386, mtree@mountainline.com.

Mountain Line — Benefits Us All!
Celebrating 35 Years of Community Bus Service.
Visit us online at www.mountainline.com and on Facebook.