Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
News Briefs

PM News Brief: Allen Park Reopening, U.S. Census Extended & Utah COVID-19 Cases

A photo of medical gloves and a mask.
Yevhenii Orlov
/
iStock
For the second day in a row, Utah health officials announced more than a thousand cases of COVID-19 with another 1,107. This story and more in Friday evening's news brief.

Friday evening, October 2, 2020

State

October's Virtual General Conference

This weekend is the October General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In the midst of civil unrest and a pandemic, some members are wondering if the Church’s leaders will address these issues to its worldwide audience. James Jones is an active Latter-day Saint and a Black creative entrepreneur in Boston and said he’s looking forward to the conference. In studying the life of Christ and other New Testament leaders who spoke out on difficult topics, he said he wishes today’s leaders would do the same and condemn racism and white supremacy. Matt Harris, a historian who focuses on the Church, said it’s unlikely leaders will take a strong stance on any controversial issues because they don’t want to offend anyone. The Church released a statement saying the focus of this conference will be on hope, inspiration and love. Read the full story.Lexi Peery, St. George

Mike Lee Tests Positive For COVID-19

Sen. Mike Lee, R-UT, said he has tested positive for COVID-19. He released a statement this Friday saying he got tested Thursday after experiencing what he thought was allergies. Lee also said he took a test while visiting the White House a few days ago, which came back negative. Lee was at the White House on Saturday to watch President Donald Trump announce Amy Coney Barrett as his Supreme Court nominee. The Republican senator said he will isolate for the next 10 days, per the advice of the Senate physician but plans to return in time for the Judiciary Committee confirmation hearings for Barrett. Read the full story.Sonja Hutson

Utah Reports 1,107 COVID-19 Cases And 15 Deaths

For the second day in a row, Utah health officials announced more than a thousand cases of COVID-19 with another 1,107. Officials also reported 15 more people have died due to the disease but cautioned that number is higher due to reporting delays; nine deaths happened last week, and there were two each in July, August and September. Of the 15 people, 12 were either hospitalized or a long-term care facility resident at the time of their death. Since the start of the pandemic, more than 845,000 Utahns have been tested for COVID-19. — Ross Terrell

Northern Utah

Allen Park To Reopen For First Time In 50 Years

Starting Sunday, for the first time in 50 years, parts of Allen Park in Salt Lake City, will open to the public. City officials said guests will be allowed to enter on the east side of the park and they’ll have access to the entire length of Allen Park Drive. Which officials said offer views of an urban forest that is home to peacocks and squirrels and is teeming with artwork and historic buildings. The park will remain open seven days a week from dusk to dawn. The city purchased the area for $7.5 million this spring and officials say they are still working on a long-term plan for how to preserve the park. — Darienne DeBrule

USU Coach Walks Back Comments On Players Opting Out

Utah State University head football Coach, Gary Anderson, is walking back his comments after saying Aggies players opting out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 is “not an option.” Anderson later clarified saying he meant to say the team doesn’t have a policy for opt outs right now as no players have chosen to do so. USU plays in the Mountain West Football conference where many programs have seen a large number of opt outs leading to smaller rosters. The Aggies are expected to return to the field later this month and take on Boise State in their first game of the shortened season. The Mountain West conference initially canceled the football season back in August due to concerns over COVID-19. — Darienne DeBrule

Southern Utah

Federal Judge Orders Census County To Be Extended

A federal judge in California has ruled the 2020 Census count must continue through the end of October. District Judge Lucy Koh found the Bureau violated a court order earlier this week by claiming the count would end on Oct. 5. The Navajo Nation is a plaintiff in the lawsuit and is encouraging all tribal members to fill out the questionnaire online or over the phone. Census workers still need to visit around 20% of households on the reservation that have not yet responded. — Kate Groetzinger, Bluff

Region/Nation

Most Of Mountain West Experiencing Drought Conditions

The latest report from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows nearly all of Nevada, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico in some form of drought. A summer of extreme heat and a weak monsoon season are to blame. An extended outlook from the U.S. Drought Monitor shows dry conditions will persist for much of the region through the end of the year. — Beau Baker, Mountain West News Bureau

KUER is listener-supported public radio. Support this work by making a donation today.