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PM News Brief: Ending Daylight Saving, Police Shooting Justification & Whirling Fish Disease

A photo of Jones Hole Creek.
Jacob W. Frank
National Park Service
Utah wildlife officials said Friday fish in Jones Hole Creek have tested positive for whirling disease. This story and more in Friday evening's news brief.

Friday evening, March 12, 2021


Rep. Chris Stewart Files Bill To End Daylight Saving Time

Twice a year, Utahns move their clocks ahead or back an hour depending on the season. It’s widely referred to as daylight saving time. Now, Rep. Chris Stewart, R-UT, is sponsoring a bill in Congress to end the biannual practice. Stewart called it outdated and unpopular. He says changing time “does nothing but confuse our schedules.” The legislation would give states the option to stay on daylight saving time permanently. For now, it’s still a thing. Don’t forget to move your clocks ahead by an hour Sunday at 2 a.m. — Ivana Martinez

Utah’s COVID Situation Improves Over The Week

Utah’s COVID-19 situation improved slightly during the week. Health officials reported 519 new cases Friday. That’s the second lowest total this week. The state’s positivity rate also dropped from Monday to Friday — it’s now just barely above 4%. Hospitalizations follow the same trend. There are currently 184 people hospitalized from COVID-19 down from close to 200 a few days ago. So far, about 642,000 people have received at least one dose of the vaccine. — Ross Terrell

Southern Utah

Kane County Asks To Have Transmission Level Index Lowered

Kane County has one of the highest COVID-19 two-week incident rates in Utah, but the county commission is asking the state not to designate it as a high transmission area. The commission said a COVID-19 outbreak at the jail “skews” the data. Sheriff Tracy Glover said there are around 117 active cases in the jail and eight of them are local inmates. Commissioners sent a letter to the state asking them to review their designation without jail cases, and they agreed to only include county inmates. County Attorney Rob Van Dyke said the push to move to a lower level is about showing the actual risk in the area. Read the full story.Lexi Peery, St. George

Northern Utah

Sim Gill Finds Split Justification Ruling For Two Officers In Deadly Shooting

Last August, West Valley City police shot and killed Damien Evans during a foot chase. Evans was under arrest for parole violations and had a gun. On Friday, Salt Lake County’s district attorney ruled Officer Clinton Moore was justified in the shooting. However, Sergeant Jason Vincent was not cleared. District Attorney Sim Gill said they are still gathering more information. “We cannot find it justified and we are leaving it at that,” Gill said. “We will look for any additional evidence but we simultaneously don’t have evidence for criminal charges.” Vincent declined to give a statement about why he used his weapon. Gill said video shows it is highly unlikely Evans fired his gun at any of the officers. — Ross Terrell

Wildlife Officials Warn Of Whirling Fish Disease

Utah wildlife officials said Friday fish in Jones Hole Creek have tested positive for whirling disease. The creek is located near Vernal. Rainbow trout from there were tested in January. Whirling disease was first discovered in Utah in 1991. It can lead to skeletal deformities, black tail and death. The disease does not affect humans. Officials said to stop the spread, fish shouldn’t be moved from the creek to other bodies of water. They also recommend thoroughly cleaning fishing gear before using it elsewhere. — Ross Terrell

U.S. Bureau Of Reclamation Transfers Four Federal Facilities

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has transferred ownership of four federal water facilities in Utah to local companies. The largest is the Provo River Project South Branch Canal in Utah County. It now belongs to the Utah Lake Distributing Company. The canal provides supplemental water for irrigating farmlands and for domestic uses in Wasatch, Salt Lake and Utah counties. The bureau also transferred the Emery County Project, the Uintah Basin Replacement Project and the Hyrum Mendon Canal and Wellsville Canal to local control. The bureau said transferring ownership will give more flexibility and local control over the projects. — Caroline Ballard


Got Vaccinated? Maybe You Shouldn’t Post Your Card Online

You may be seeing a lot of COVID-19 vaccination record cards shared on social media as more people get vaccinated. But the Federal Trade Commission is urging people to find other ways to celebrate due to identity theft. One way to think about how identity theft works is to imagine it like a puzzle. Thieves gather information about you from multiple sources. So a single detail — like your full name or your date of birth — could very well be the last piece of information an identity thief needs to finish the picture. That’s why cyber security experts say sharing the sensitive material on your vaccination record card can make you vulnerable. — Maggie Mullen, Mountain West News Bureau

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