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PM News Brief: Say Their Names Memorial, COVID-19 Case Streak Ends & Flu Shot Season

A photo of disposable face masks.
Chelsea Naughton
/
KUER
Utah’s four day streak of more than a thousand new daily cases has come to an end as health officials announced 827 cases Monday. This story and more in Monday evening's news brief.

Monday evening, September 28, 2020

State

McAdams Pushes Bill Aimed At Veteran Suicide Risk

Rep. Ben McAdams, D-UT, is pushing legislation that requires the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to study links between living at high altitudes and veteran depression and suicide risk. If the study finds there is a link, the bill requires a follow-up that looks at the biology behind that and what the best treatment may be to address it. The legislation passed the House last week and is awaiting a signature or veto from resident Donald Trump. — Sonja Hutson

Thousand COVID-19 Case Streak Comes To An End

Utah’s four day streak of more than a thousand new daily cases has come to an end as health officials announced 827 cases Monday. Current hospitalizations also dropped below 170 people, though COVID-19 patients still account for nearly two-thirds of ICU patients. But the state’s rolling seven day average went over 1,000 for the first time since the pandemic began, while the positivity rate remains around 14%. — Ross Terrell

Follow KUER’s coverage of the coronavirus in Utah.

Utah Public Schools To See Record Setting Fund Distribution

Utah’s public K-12 schools will get nearly $93 million this year from the Permanent State School Fund. That’s money generated from leasing and selling 3.3 million acres of school trust land. According to the state treasurer, that’s the largest distribution ever from the fund and up 5% from last year’s record distribution. The money is given to schools based on the number of students they have and local community councils decide how to spend it. In a statement, State Superintendent Sydnee Dickson said some schools are choosing to spend the money on remote learning needs. — Jon Reed

Northern Utah

Say Their Names Memorials Comes To Salt Lake City

The traveling “Say Their Names” Memorial, which remembers victims of racial injustice, stopped in Salt Lake City this weekend. It features about 250 names ranging from Emmett Till and Trayvon Martin to George Floyd and Medgar Evers. Rep. Sandra Hollins, D-Salt Lake City, and the only African-American woman in the Utah State House, said she’s glad the memorial came but it’s time for action. “How do we move beyond the murals and the protests?” Hollins said. “What do we need to do, and what changes need to be made to assure that everyone in our communities feels safe?” This is the second time the memorial has come to Utah. In mid-August, it was erected in Provo for a few days before being taken down by the city due to a permit issue. — Ross Terrell

Ashley National Forest Ranger Stations

The Ashley National Forest is proposing to get rid of its two oldest structures, both almost dating back to the birth of the U.S. Forest Service more than a century ago. The Salt Lake Tribune reported the agency lacks the resources to properly maintain all of its historic properties. The deteriorating, rodent-infested Indian Canyon Ranger Station would be razed under the proposal posted earlier this month, which is open for public comment through Oct. 23. The Stockmore Ranger Station, nestled on the Duchesne River confluence with its West Fork near Hanna, would be sold to the highest bidder without restriction. — Associated Press

Region/Nation

Are Americans Uninformed About The Flu Shot?

It will be especially important to get your flu shot this year. But less than half of Americans typically get the vaccine. According to one study from the American Academy of Family Physicians, that low number could have to do with the fact that Americans are largely misinformed about the flu. That’s especially true for millennials — who were both the least likely to get the vaccine and the least informed. — Maggie Mullen, Mountain West News Bureau