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News Brief: Black Friday, Medical Cannabis & Library Boycott

Shoppers walk the mall during Black Friday.
David Fuchs
Fashion Place in Murray, Utah, is one of the state's busiest malls. The shopping center does more sales per square foot than any other mall in Utah, according to Mark Thorsen, the mall's senior general manager.

Friday afternoon, November 29, 2019


Holiday Shopping Season Safety

The holiday shopping season has begun, and consumers are warned to be careful both when they buy things in person and online. The Utah Division of Consumer Protection has recommendations for keeping information safe while shopping, such as not connecting to unsecured public WiFi, keeping up to date on anti-virus software and only using trusted apps. The agency also recommends comparing return policies, using coupons and reading reviews beforehand to make informed purchases. — Caroline Ballard

Retailers Brace For Holiday Season 

As Black Friday arrived, bargain hunters swarmed malls today, including Fashion Place in Murray, which saw tens of thousands of visitors — more than twice its normal traffic. During Black Friday the mall increased security, moved employee parking off-site and even coordinated new stoplight timings with Utah Department of Transportation. — David Fuchs

Utah’s Medical Cannabis Demand Could Outpace Supply

When Utah’s medical cannabis program starts next year, there may not be enough product for patients trying to fill their prescriptions. A spokesman with the Department of Agriculture and Food said it may take a few weeks for the supply to catch up after the program starts on March 1. 

In the meantime, a state Department of Health spokesman said patients could travel to other states with legalized recreational marijuana or wait for Utah pharmacies to restock their prescription. — Sonja Hutson

State Libraries To Boycott Publisher Over New Policy

Nearly 70 libraries in Utah are boycotting MacMillan Publishers over a new policy about purchasing ebooks, a consortium of librarians said today. The policy prevents libraries from buying more than one ebook eight weeks following release and from sharing ebooks with other libraries. The boycott will last until May 2020. – Jenny Goldsberry

San Juan County Clerk Under Investigation For Electioneering: Report

The San Juan County Clerk is under investigation for potential electioneering in the November election, according to the Moab Sun News. The Weber County Sheriff’s Office recently completed its investigation into clerk John David Nielsen. The Weber County Attorney’s office is expected to issue a decision on whether to pursue prosecution in the next week. 

Poll workers working for the ACLU of Utah discovered Nielsen distributing an editorial about the election at early voting locations. Nielsen confirmed to KUER that this was true, but said he intended to educate voters, not sway their decision. If found guilty, Nielsen could face a $2,500 fine and up to a year in jail. — Kate Groetzinger

Winter Storm Warning Through Saturday Morning

A winter storm warning is in effect with more storms about to give Utah’s ski areas a boost. Brian McInerny of the National Weather Service says this last storm is just what the state needs.

He says some areas in Utah got upwards of 2 feet of snow. He expects snow this evening and more to come next week. The Utah Department of Transportation anticipated hazardous winter road conditions this holiday weekend, and will pause road construction until Monday. — Jenny Goldsberry

Winter Weather Dangers For Postal Carriers

Postal workers are reminding people to clear snow and ice from mailboxes and sidewalks. The Postal Service reports 112 carriers in Utah were injured last year due to slips, trips and falls — including 46 in Salt Lake City. They say many of those accidents happened because of unsafe conditions. — Caroline Ballard

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