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Policy To Ban Transgender Athletes From Competing In Sports Nears Governor's Desk

The Montana House and Senate have both endorsed a controversial policy to ban transgender athletes from competing in grade school and college sports under the gender with which they identify.

The bill is one step closer to the governor’s desk after receiving an amendment that could void the policy.

The added provision would void the bill if the federal government strips Montana education funds due to Title IX, which prevents sex-based discrimination in schools, and if the state cannot successfully appeal the federal decision.

Senate lawmakers narrowly offered preliminary support to the policy by a 27-23 margin, while the House voted 60-39 in support of the policy. Groups of Republicans joined Democrats in both chambers voting against the bill.

It now faces a final vote in each chamber.

Kevin Trevellyan is Yellowstone Public Radio's Report for America statehouse reporter.