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PM News Brief: University Of Utah Circuit Breaker, Skiing Partnership & COVID-19 Case Streak

A photo of a sign that reads 'The University of Utah Founded February 28, 1850' in front of a snowy background with trees on either side.
Brian Albers
/
KUER
The University of Utah is stopping all in-person classes for the next two weeks. It’s part of a pre-planned “circuit breaker” to slow the spread of COVID-19 on campus. This story and more in Friday evening's news brief.

Friday evening, February 26, 2021

State

Massive Infrastructure Funding Bill Passes House Committee

Utah could soon be in for massive infrastructure investments, after a bill cleared the House Economic Development Committee Friday. The $2.2 billion dollar infrastructure expansion would support roads, transit and other projects across Utah over the next decade. One project is adding another track to the Frontrunner passenger train to increase frequency. The bill also invests money into state parks and trails. It calls for $1.4 billion in bonds and $863 million from the state’s general fund to pay for the projects. Read the full story.Emily Means

Bill Changing Sexual Education Requirements Fails In House

A Utah bill would have required sexual education in schools to include information about preventing sexual violence, but the state House voted it down Friday. It would’ve required parents to sign off on their kids participation. Rep. Carol Spackman Moss, D-Holladay, is the bill’s sponsor. She said the information is critical for kids to learn. Critics of the bill said the concept of consent is too complicated for teachers to explain and argued that conversation should be left up to parents. Read the full story. Sonja Hutson

Eight Consecutive Days Of Fewer Than 1,000 COVID-19 Cases

Utah health officials announced another 651 COVID-19 cases Friday. It continues an eight day streak of fewer than 1,000 daily cases. Seventeen more people have died from the virus. Officials said almost half of those deaths happened before Feb. 5. The Southeast Utah Health Department is also encouraging anyone who is eligible to receive the vaccine to book an appointment on their website. They opened up more than 800 slots Thursday in Emery, Carbon and Grand Counties. — Ross Terrell

Northern Utah

University Of Utah Implementing Second Circuit Breaker To Help With COVID-19

The University of Utah is stopping all in-person classes for the next two weeks. It’s part of a pre-planned “circuit breaker” to slow the spread of COVID-19 on campus. The school had a similar two week pause in the fall. Starting Monday, all classes and student services will move online. All faculty and staff who aren’t required to physically be on campus are encouraged to work from home and most buildings will be locked. The U has reported nearly 700 cases of COVID-19 so far during it’s spring semester. — Caroline Ballard

Park City Ski Company Partnering With National Brotherhood Of Skiers

Park City-based U.S. Ski and Snowboard announced a four-year partnership Thursday with the National Brotherhood of Skiers. The goal is to increase support for minority skiers and snowboarders. The NBS has been around since the 70s and promotes winter sports for minorities. The partnership is meant to expand their participation at the highest levels of competition, including the Olympics. It will include funding, training and outreach for minority athletes who have faced economic barriers. It will kick off with U.S. Ski and Snowboard sponsoring this year’s Virtual Black Ski Summit. — Caroline Ballard