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AM News Brief: USU Dorm Quarantine, St. George Protest & Real Salt Lake For Sale

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Brian Albers
/
KUER
Nearly 300 students across four dorms at Utah State University are in quarantine after “elevated levels” of COVID-19 were found in wastewater samples. This and more in the Monday morning news brief.
Northern Utah

Owner Announces Plan To Sell Real Salt Lake

Dell Loy Hansen, owner of Utah’s Major League Soccer team, Real Salt Lake, announced Sunday that he will sell Utah Soccer Holdings, which also includes the Utah Royals and Real Monarchs. The move to sell the teams comes just days after Hansen came under fire for comments he made when Real Salt Lake players, in protest of police brutality, refused to take the field. A report from The Athletic later detailed other allegations of Hansen making racist comments, and MLS and the National Women’s Soccer League have launched an investigation into the claims. Hansen said he would be taking a leave of absence during the investigation, but in a letter to RSL fans, Hansen apologized and said the best way forward for the organization was through new ownership. — Emily Means

Utah State University Dorm Quarantine

Nearly 300 students across four dorms at Utah State University are in quarantine after “elevated levels” of COVID-19 were found in wastewater samples. The four residence halls are Rich, Jones, Morgan and Davis. Officials said Sunday there are currently no positive COVID cases in its residence halls, but the University is working with the state and Bear River health departments to organize testing for the 287 students. USU’s fall semester started Monday, but students in the affected dorms should quarantine for 3 to 4 days while they wait for their results. USU's coronavirus page shows nine new active cases of COVID-19 among students living off-campus, one faculty member and one staffer. — Ross Terrell

Man Dies Following Possible Bison Encounter On Antelope Island

A 55-year-old Syracuse man was fatally injured in a possible bison goring Saturday at Antelope Island State Park. Park officials said two women found the man calling out for help while they were running on Lakeside Trail. After calling 911, the man was transported via helicopter to the hospital. Officials said the injuries are consistent with a bison encounter, but there were no witnesses and they're investigating. On the Facebook group Wasatch Mountain Wranglers, Becca Shanks identified the man as her father Larry M. Adams. — Ross Terrell

Great Salt Lake Is Shrinking

The Great Salt Lake is shrinking, and a new report found upstream diversions are the reason. Those have held back sufficient quantities of water to replenish the lake, which is now at half its normal size with further declines predicted. The Great Salt Lake Advisory Council said they fear that contraction puts an important ecosystem at risk. The lake supports more than a billion dollars in economic activity connected to brine shrimp, mineral extraction and recreation and also provides an essential resting and nesting refuge for millions of migrating birds. The council said bold water conservation strategies and changes in long-standing law and water policies are needed. — Associated Press

Southern Utah

Hundreds Of People Show Up For St. George Protest — Based On A Rumor

After rumors spread on social media that buses of antifa protesters would be in St. George for a Black Lives Matter event Saturday night, several hundred people gathered downtown with guns, American flags and Trump signs. Those rumors turned out to be false, but that did little to stop people from showing up. A small group of Black Lives Matter supporters also showed up and held signs nearby, though it wasn’t organized by the official Southern Utah chapter. There were tense standoffs between the groups at times, but no major issues arose. — Lexi Peery, St. George

Uptick In School Enrollment May Be Due To Fewer Pandemic Restrictions

Washington County schools have almost 35,000 students enrolled, according to preliminary counts. The district spokesperson, Steven Dunham, said that’s up “a bit” from previous years and is likely due to more out-of-state residents moving in. He said he’s been fielding calls from parents around the country looking to enroll their students in southwest Utah schools. Dunham said it’s probably because there are less COVID-19 restrictions in the area, which is a draw for some parents. Read the full story. — Lexi Peery, St. George

State

Utah Had No COVID Deaths Over Weekend

The Utah Department of Health reported 906 new COVID-19 cases over the weekend but no new deaths. More than 655,000 people in the state have been tested since the start of the pandemic. Over the past week, 9.1% of tests have come back positive, with an average of 387 cases per day. Earlier this month, the governor set a goal of getting to an average of 400 or fewer daily cases by Sept. 1. As of Sunday, 116 people were hospitalized with COVID-19.

Region/Nation

COVID Hitting Families’ Budgets Hard

A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities shows that during this pandemic, households with children face high hardship rates in our region — especially with rent and food security. Across the Mountain West, an average of about 36% of households with children are either behind on rent, or haven’t had enough to eat at some point during the pandemic. — Amanda Peacher, Mountain West News Bureau

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