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AM News Brief: Fireworks In Wildfire Land, Lee Questions Surveillance & Jazz Honors Late Jerry Sloan

Photo of Jerry Sloan
Wikimedia Commons
The Utah Jazz will honor the late Jerry Sloan with jersey patches when the NBA resumes its season Wednesday in Orlando. This story and more in the Wednesday morning news brief.

Wednesday morning, July 22, 2020

Region/Nation

Utah Senator Questions Surveillance

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, sent a letter to Attorney General William Barr Tuesday, requesting details on if and how the Trump administration stopped several mass surveillance programs. Those programs were authorized under certain provisions of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which expired earlier this year. Lee, a Republican, sent the letter jointly with Democratic Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy. They wrote “Congress and the American people have a right to know if this or any other administration is spying on people in the United States.” — Sonja Hutson

Congressional Step To Expand Telehealth Past Pandemic

Rep. John Curtis, R-Utah, is hoping that telehealth will be a permanent option for patients. The Republican joined three Democratic representatives in introducing a bill Tuesday to study the impacts of telehealth during the pandemic. Congress passed regulatory changes that made it possible to expand phone and video health services during the crisis. Curtis said making those permanent would mean greater access for people in rural communities and less expensive health care. A companion bill will also be introduced in the Senate later this week. — Elaine Clark

State

Seven-Day COVID Case Average

Utah’s 7-day average of new, daily COVID-19 cases is now at 610. Governor Gary Herbert has said the goal is to bring that number under 500 by August 1. Tuesday, the state department of health reported 486 new cases of the disease. 186 people are currently hospitalized. Officials reported four more people have died, bringing the state’s death toll to 251. — Elaine Clark

Follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

Northern Utah

Jazz Honor Late Jerry Sloan

The Utah Jazz will honor the late Jerry Sloan with jersey patches when the NBA resumes its season Wednesday in Orlando. The Jazz announced Tuesday that its players will sport the number 1,223 on the front of their jerseys. It's a tribute to the number of wins that Sloan had as head coach of the team. Sloan spent 23 years leading the Jazz, and he was inducted into the hall of fame in 2009. He died in May from Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia. — Ross Terrell

Southern Utah

Fireworks And Pioneer Day

Fireworks are now allowed in certain parts of Utah for Pioneer Day, which is this Friday. But restrictions will be back in place Saturday. State officials are urging people to be careful as the state experiences a historic year for wildfires started by people. There are currently two burning in Washington County that have consumed over 1,000 acres, and County Chief Tom Kuhlmann is recommending people avoid lighting off fireworks this weekend. — Lexi Peery

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