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AM News Brief: Cocktails To-Go, Jordan School District Plans & COVID Pushes People To Relocate

Photo of moving boxes.
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Millions of Americans have relocated due to the coronavirus pandemic according to the Pew Research Center. This story and more in the Wednesday morning news brief.

Wednesdsay morning, July 8, 2020

State

Utah Legislators Benefit From Federal Coronavirus Aid

Companies owned by three Republican Utah legislators received a combined total of between $1 million and $2.7 million as part of the federal coronavirus aid program. According to The Associated Press, there is no evidence of special treatment, and Treasury Department data do not reveal exact amounts. House Speaker Brad Wilson, R-Kaysville, and Rep. Mike Schultz, R-Hooper, run home building companies, and Sen. Jerry Stevenson, R-Layton, oversees a nursery and garden center. The figures show more than 50,000 businesses and nonprofit organizations in Utah received loans, totaling nearly $4 billion. — Associated Press

Cocktails To-Go

A Salt Lake City bar owner wants the state to allow cocktails to-go as a way to make up for lost revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic. While restaurants have been able to offer takeout orders, bars without kitchens haven’t had many options besides reopening. Katy Willis, owner of the Quarters Arcade Bar, is proposing selling sealed-container cocktails for customers to take home. She said a change in operations is needed for businesses to survive. More than 30 states have already implemented similar programs since the pandemic started, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States. In another effort to change Utah’s liquor policy, two Democratic lawmakers have asked the governor to allow people to order beer with their grocery deliveries. — Emily Means

COVID In Long-Term Care Facilities

More than 600 residents in Utah’s long-term care facilities have tested positive for COVID-19. It’s particularly alarming since people older than 65 are considered to be at high risk for contracting the virus. Utah has more than 300 long-term care facilities and so far, 221 of them have had at least one case of the disease. About 42% of Utah’s COVID related deaths have also been long-term care residents. As of Tuesday, the state has seen more than 26,000 confirmed cases of the COVID-19. The Utah Department of Health reported 564 new cases.They also said four more people have died and 49 more people have been hospitalized. — Ross Terrell

Follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

Northern Utah

Salt Lake County Expungement Day

Some Salt Lake County residents with criminal records will have an opportunity Wednesday to have their slate wiped clean. The County Mayor’s Office organized the remote expungement day. More than 65 attorneys have volunteered to help people determine if they are eligible and how to achieve it, and a federal grant will pay for the fees. As of Tuesday morning, 684 people have signed up. The mayor’s office says criminal records can create barriers to jobs and housing and that clearing them will help people successfully reintegrate into society, keep them out of the prison system and reduce homelessness. — Caroline Ballard

Jordan School District Announces Fall Plan

The Jordan School District has approved a schedule for reopening in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The District board vote requires students to be in classrooms Monday through Thursday and then follow a plan of at-home, alternative learning each Friday. Officials said they’ll reassess the schedule after the fall semester. Parents who are not comfortable sending their children back to school buildings will have an option for online learning. — Associated Press

Region/Nation

Navajo COVID Numbers

On the Navajo Nation, health officials tallied 27 new coronavirus cases and one additional known death Tuesday. Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez notes Arizona has the highest percentage of COVID-19 cases in the country and said that's concerning since the reservation spans that state, plus New Mexico and a portion of southeast Utah. — Diane Maggipinto

COVID Pushes 72 Million Americans To Relocate

Millions of Americans have relocated due to the coronavirus pandemic according to the Pew Research Center. The survey, given in early June, shows that 22% of Americans either have moved or know someone who has. That translates into more than 72 million people. Young adults under 30 are the most affected group, but nearly 30% of movers said they relocated over concerns of contracting the coronavirus. — Noah Glick, Mountain West News Bureau

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