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PM Brief: A Utah powder alert, payday loan interest rates & funding for reproductive health

The Ukrainian flag flies over the base area at Snowbasin resort in Utah, April 3, 2022.
Brian Albers
The Ukrainian flag flies over the base area at Snowbasin resort in Utah, April 3, 2022.

Monday, April 11, 2022


Another burst of winter

Just in time for spring, a winter storm system is poised to make its way through Utah over the next several days. It will bring moisture and significant snowfall to Northern Utah and very windy conditions statewide — making travel difficult. Winds could spell trouble for light, high profile vehicles, and snowy conditions could make mountain passes difficult. Some places in the Wasatch Range and Uintas are expecting 1 to 2 feet of snow between now and Wednesday morning. The National Weather Service recommends taking food, water and blankets in the car if you plan to travel through those areas. It’s better news for Utah’s ski areas, though. Ski Utah has announced a Utah Powder Alert since forecasters are confident of at least 8 inches of new snow for resorts. — Caroline Ballard

Utah has third-highest payday loan interest rates

A new nationwide survey of payday loan expenses shows a wide range among the states in the Mountain West. Pew Charitable Trusts found that Idaho and Nevada were ranked No. 1 and No. 2 nationally when it comes to the biggest burden on consumers. Idaho borrowers are charged an average interest rate of more than 650%. Utah ranks third in the nation, where interest rates average 554% and the average cost to borrow $500 is $850. — Kaleb Roedel, Mountain West News Bureau

Northern Utah

Why people gather at the Jordan River

A new report from researchers at the University of Utah explores why people experiencing homelessness set up camp along the Jordan River. Some of the factors include a feeling of safety and community, and on average, people reported having lived there for nearly two years. The analysis from the months-long study also found many moved there after their previous encampments were taken down by city and county officials. As part of the study, researchers recommended including the experience of unsheltered people in future management plans for the river. Read the full story. — Emily Means

Funding for reproductive health services

Planned Parenthood Association of Utah is once again receiving Title X money. The federal program provides funding for services like birth control and contraceptive counseling. The group withdrew from the program in 2019 over a Trump administration rule that prohibited recipients from referring patients for abortions. In a press release Monday, Planned Parenthood said the program helps provide equitable access to health care for Latino and Indigenous patients as well as low-income and rural patients. — Elaine Clark


Daybell case to move forward

An Idaho judge said Lori Vallow Daybell is fit to stand trial on some charges. She’s accused of conspiring to kill her children, her estranged husband and a lover’s wife in a case involving unusual doomsday belief allegations. The case had been on hold after the judge ordered her into a mental facility. In Monday’s ruling, the judge said Daybell has been restored to competency. She has not entered a plea but is scheduled to be arraigned next week. Her new husband Chad Daybell is also charged in the case, and he has pleaded not guilty. — Associated Press

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