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AM News Brief: Election Day, Nuclear Power & Navajo Casinos

Chelsea Naughton
As of Monday morning, the number of early votes in Utah topped 1 million, according to the state elections office. This story and more in the Tuesday morning news brief.

Tuesday morning, November 3, 2020


Election Day In Utah Begins With Record Votes Cast

In-person voting began at 7 a.m. People who are not yet registered can do so at the polls to cast a provisional ballot. The vote will count as long as the voter’s identification can be verified by Nov. 9. As of Monday morning, the number of early votes in Utah topped 1 million, according to the state elections office. And Utah County heads into this Tuesday with a new record. County Clerk Amelia Powers Gardner said her office has already received more votes than have ever been cast in an election in Utah County. Ballots across the state can be deposited at drop boxes today until 8 p.m. in the county where the voter resides. Polls also close at 8 p.m.. — Diane Maggipinto

Everything You Need To Know About Voting In Utah

28 Cities Still Committed To Nuclear Power Project

More than two dozen cities in Utah will move forward with a nuclear power project, despite its high cost and the recent departure of some key investors. A cooperative of Western cities called the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems is spearheading the Carbon Free Power project, which aims to build a nuclear power plant in Idaho. It’s been underway since 2015, but so far only about a quarter of the plant’s total potential output has been claimed by investors. Seven Utah cities left the project in the past two months, citing concerns about the low subscription rate. 28 cities remain invested in the $6 billion project, and 22 of those are in the state. They will help fund the project’s next phase, which involves applying for a license to build the power plant. — Kate Groetzinger, Bluff

Northern Utah

COVID Prison Protest

The families of people incarcerated at the Utah State Prison met Monday to protest the Department of Corrections’ handling of COVID-19 outbreaks. The corrections department recently announced a second COVID-19 outbreak at the state prison. Families want inmates who test positive to be separated from those who don’t have the disease. They also want expanded criteria for early release. As of Saturday, there were 97 active COVID-19 cases at the state prison. Read the full story. — Emily Means


Navajo CARES Act Applications Open To Members

The Navajo Nation is accepting applications for monetary assistance through an online portal that opened Monday. The Tribal government set aside $49 million of its federal CARES act dollars for the program, which is open to all tribal members with a Certificate of Indian Blood. Officials said over 16,000 applications have been processed so far despite technical difficulties with the system, and that every application will be considered before funds are distributed. The deadline to apply is Nov. 30 and payments will begin in December. — Kate Groetzinger, Bluff

Plan To Reopen Casinos On Navajo Nation

Lawmakers on the Navajo Nation have approved legislation to reopen the tribe's four casinos. The action came Monday despite a tribal health expert warning that the coronavirus is spreading uncontrollably. Navajo President Jonathan Nez has not said whether he'll support the measure. The tribe reported 47 additional cases of COVID-19 as of Monday and three confirmed deaths. The latest figures bring the total number of reported cases to 11,875 and the known death toll to 584 on the reservation. — Diane Maggipinto

Remembering Lynchings In The West

A new sign in Denver recognizes a Black teenager who was lynched 120 years ago. In 1900, Preston Porter Jr. was accused of murdering a white teenager on Colorado’s plains. He was jailed in Denver and sent to Limon. That's where a mob chained him to railroad ties and burned him in front of a crowd. Judy Ollman, with the Colorado Lynching Memorial Project, said it’s time to recognize that this is part of Denver and Colorado’s history. Read the full story from Denverite. — Kevin Beaty, Denver

Here in Utah, a Black coal miner named Robert Marshall was lynched in Carbon County in 1925. He was accused of shooting a marshall and before any trial took place, a crowd took him from police custody and hanged him. Eleven men were arrested — but the murder charges were dismissed because no one woud testify against them. In 1998, a group dedicated a headstone to Marshall's memory in Price. — Elaine Clark

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