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AM News Brief: Businesses Taking The ‘H2Oath,’ RSL Allowing Full Capacity & State Investigating Prison Death

Photo of an empty soccer stadium
Wikimedia Commons
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Full capacity crowds are now allowed at Real Salt Lake home soccer matches. This story and more in the Tuesday morning news brief.

Tuesday morning, June 29, 2021

State

State Challenges Businesses To Take ‘H2Oath’

Gov. Spencer Cox and the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce are asking businesses across the state to conserve water. They issued a challenge on Monday called the “Water Champion H2Oath.” Derek Miller, president of the chamber of commerce, said businesses are one of the biggest water consumers in Utah. “We're confident by implementing these measures, and supported by a statewide collective effort that all of us together, can successfully navigate this drought.” Miller said it can be as easy as reducing how often lawns are watered. Utah is currently in the midst of its worst drought since the 1950s. — Ivana Martinez

Southern Utah

Possible Homicide At State Prison In Gunnison

Utah's Department of Corrections is dealing with a possible homicide. In a news release, the department said an inmate died at the Henry Facility at the Central Utah Correctional Facility in Gunnison Monday morning. The inmate was found unresponsive in his cell and was pronounced dead shortly after a medical evaluation. The Department of Corrections said the Henry Facility is now on lockdown until further notice. The incident is being investigated by the Utah State Bureau of Investigation, and the department said attempts to notify the victim's family have been made. — Pamela McCall

Northern Utah

Real Salt Lake Open To Full Capacity

Full capacity crowds are now allowed at Real Salt Lake home soccer matches. In a news release, the team said crowd size restrictions are being lifted for the rest of this year's Major League Soccer season in accordance with updated state, county and local health protocols. The first full-capacity home game is Saturday against Los Angeles FC. Some safety protocols are staying in place, including digital entry and ticket scanning — and cash won't be accepted. There will also be multiple hand sanitizing stations and masks are encouraged but not required. Rio Tinto Stadium will also offer specific seating areas within the stadium where masks will be required for all ticket holders within those areas. — Pamela McCall

Region/Nation

Drought Strains Colorado River Agreement

One more dry year could force Colorado River water managers back to the negotiating table to figure out how to conserve more water in its biggest reservoirs. A 2019 drought plan is being used now in the river’s lower basin to rein in uses in Arizona, Nevada and Mexico. Michael Bernardo is with the Bureau of Reclamation, the federal agency that manages dams in the West. He said if conditions don’t improve over the next year, a whole new agreement will be necessary. The Colorado River has a supply and demand imbalance, which warming temperatures and prolonged dry conditions have exacerbated. A first-ever water shortage declaration is expected later this summer. Read the full story. — Luke Runyon, KUNC

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