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AM News Brief: Yellowstone COVID, Suspended Hunting Licenses & Jazz Make Statement On Jerseys

Photo of Donovan Mitchell in a special jersey that says "Say Her Name."
Utah Jazz via Twitter
The Utah Jazz season officially resumes Thursday afternoon as the NBA restarts play in Orlando. But you won't be seeing the Jazz players’ names on the back of their jerseys. This story and more in the Thursday morning news brief.";

Thursday morning, July 30, 2020

State

Land Management And Public Input

Conservationists in Utah and throughout the country are expressing concern about recent proposals from the Bureau of Land Management that would limit input on the removal of trees and vegetation on public lands. Kya Marienfeld, with the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance, said that would mean the Bureau could remove vegetation using chemical treatments or chainsaws without feedback from scientists. The BLM said they use vegetation removal as a way to restore natural conditions and contain wildfires. — Jessica Lowell

Hunting Licenses Suspended

Five men have had their Utah hunting licenses suspended after breaking wildlife protection laws. A Pleasant Grove man received the longest suspension of 10 years after he shot a trophy buck deer within city limits and outside of hunting season. The suspensions are separate from court proceedings though all five people have been convicted for their violations. The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is allowed to suspend licenses for one to fourteen years depending on the nature of the violation. — Elaine Clark

Daily COVID Cases Lowest In Six Weeks

The Utah Department of Health reported 339 new positive COVID-19 cases Wednesday, marking the state’s lowest number of new daily cases since mid-June. Health officials also announced six more people died, four of whom were long-term care facility residents. The state is moving closer though to Gov. Gary Herbert’s target goal of fewer than 500 average daily cases by August 1. As of Wednesday, Utah has averaged 511 new daily cases for the past week. — Ross Terrell

Follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

Northern Utah

Utah Jazz Make Statement With Jerseys

The Utah Jazz season officially resumes Thursday afternoon as the NBA restarts play in Orlando. But you won’t be seeing the Jazz players’ names on the back of their jerseys. Instead, all 16 have opted to have messages of social justice. It’s part of a league-wide initiative to continue the conversation surrounding protests against racial injustice. The sayings sported by the Jazz will range from “Equality” to “Say Her Name” and even include “Justice Now” and “Power to the People.” — Ross Terrell

Southern Utah

FLDS Wary Of Census

Almost 60% of Iron County residents have completed the U.S. Census, but according to census tract data, less than a quarter of residents in the eastern parts of the county have done it. Some of those areas have pockets of Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints where many people are wary of the government. Iron County Commissioner Mike Bleak said that with changes to the census because of the pandemic, they’re even more difficult to reach. Read the full story. — Lexi Peery, St. George

Region/Nation

Execution Date Set For Navajo Man

U.S. officials announced Wednesday that they’ve set an execution date for the only Native American on federal death row. Lezmond Mitchell is scheduled to be put to death August 26 in Indiana where he is being held. The Navajo man was among the first of a handful of inmates set to be executed after the Trump administration ended an informal 17-year moratorium. Mitchell temporarily was spared by a federal appeals court as his attorneys argued to interview jurors for potential racial bias, but the court sided against him in late April. Mitchell was convicted of the 2001 murder of a Navajo woman and her 9-year-old granddaughter in Arizona. — Associated Press

Yellowstone COVID Cases

Three visitors and two concessions employees at Yellowstone National Park have tested positive for COVID-19. National Parks are taking precautions against the virus but they say it’s not easy though because visitors are flocking to outdoor destinations that seem safe. Yellowstone National Park reported an increase in visitation over 2019 for the last week in June. Some parks are asking visitors to wear masks, but in many parks including Yellowstone, they’re not mandatory.Amanda Peacher, Mountain West News Bureau

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