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PM News Brief: Cutthroat Trout Restoration, Public Safety Reform & Virtual Job Fair

Close-up photo of a cutthroat trout.
Courtesy of Glacier National Park
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources will begin treating waterways in the High Uintas to help bring back cutthroat trout. That story and more in this evening's news brief.

Tuesday evening, August 25, 2020

STATE

403 COVID Cases, Seven More Utahns Die

Another 403 cases of COVID-19 were reported Tuesday by Utah’s Department of Health. But officials said that number is artificially high due to a reporting delay from a lab partner. The health department also announced that seven more people have died due to the disease. Six were either hospitalized or in a long term care facility. People living in nursing homes or other care facilities account for 45% of deaths in Utah. And Salt Lake County residents make up nearly 60% of the deaths. — Ross Terrell

Follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

Virtual Job Fair Being Hosted Thursday

The Utah Department of Workforce Services is planning another virtual job fair this week. A temporary status that allowed people who are unemployed to not have to report they were looking for work ended earlier this month. Now, most people receiving benefits must prove they are applying for jobs every week. The job fair takes place Thursday from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. Those wanting to attend must pre-register at jobs.utah.gov. — Caroline Ballard

Surveys On Public Safety Reform In The Works

The Utah Division of Multicultural Affairs is working on a survey to gauge public opinion on eight public safety reform ideas following massive protests for racial justice earlier this summer. Greg Jeffs, with the division, told the state’s Multicultural Commission Tuesday the proposals include increased use of non-police social work and require law enforcement to use the least deadly force. The Utah League of Cities and Towns is also conducting a survey. Theirs will focus on community trust in police. — Sonja Hutson

Utah Board Of Education Searching For Public Feedback

The Utah State Board of Education is looking for feedback on two core standards — dance and outdoor recreation. Some of the objectives are for students to gain an appreciation for dance as an art form and to accept differences in what the media may portray as the ideal dancer’s body. For outdoor recreation, students would learn certain outdoor skills, like biking, paddling and how to navigate using a compass or GPS. Stakeholders have until Sept. 23 to offer suggestions on the standards. — Ross Terrell

NORTHERN UTAH

Burgess Owens Accused Of Plagiarizing Parts Of 2018 Book

Burgess Owens, the Republican candidate for Utah’s 4th Congressional District, plagiarized several passages in a 2018 book, according to the the left-leaning media watchdog Media Matters for America. Published Tuesday, the article identifies 12 excerpts in Owens’ book “Why I Stand” that are nearly identical to passages from Wikipedia articles, conservative publications, a history book and others. Some don’t include any citation for those sources. Other pages in the book include citations but don’t make it clear that Owens is quoting directly from those sources. Owens’ campaign, as well as the book’s publisher Post Hill Press, did not respond to requests for comment. Read the full story.Sonja Hutson

DWR Restoring Cutthroat Trout To Colorado River

Starting next week, the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources will begin treating waterways in the High Uintas to help bring back cutthroat trout. The fish is native to the Colorado River but things like habitat loss and competition with invasive species has caused its population to dwindle. DWR will be using rotenone to clear out brook trout, a non-native species. Rotenone is a naturally occurring substance which is toxic to fish, though it’s not harmful to people or pets. After closing and treating two lakes and a stream over the first two weeks of September, wildlife officials will restock cutthroat trout to the river. — Ross Terrell

REGION/NATION

Environmental DNA Could Help Stave Off Invasive Species 

A new lab in our region could help track and eradicate invasive species in the U.S. The lab is being built in Boise, Idaho, but would test environmental DNA from around the nation. That is, instead of trying to find an invasive animal or survey for it, they could just sample water to test for DNA of certain species. And in our region, that could help keep species like quagga and zebra mussels at bay. — Madelyn Beck, Mountain West News Bureau

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