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AM News Brief: Election day, space junk & tech education program

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Renee Bright
/
KUER
Tuesday is Election Day. Cities and towns across Utah are holding elections for mayor and councils. This story and more in Tuesday's news brief.

Tuesday morning, Nov. 2, 2021

State

There’s still time to vote

Tuesday is Election Day. Cities and towns across Utah are holding elections for mayor and councils. Mail in ballots needed to be postmarked by Monday, Nov. 1 to be counted. But, they can still be dropped off at a ballot drop box before 8 p.m. Tuesday. People who haven’t registered to vote can still do so at any polling location Tuesday. It requires two forms of identification — one that proves identity and another that verifies residence. There are details about local elections and voter requirements at vote.utah.gov. — Elaine Clark

Commission presents redistricting maps

Utah’s Independent Redistricting Commission presented its maps to legislators Monday. Over the course of the four-hour meeting, the commission walked their Legislative counterparts through their public engagement and mapmaking processes. Sen. Scott Sandall, R-Tremonton, is one of the legislators leading the redistricting process. He said they’ll at least consider the maps and compare them to the Legislature’s own. The independent group only advises the state Legislature — which means lawmakers can take or leave the maps. Commission Chair Rex Facer said it would be great if they did take their suggestions, but more importantly, he said he hopes the commission’s work can continue in the future. Read the full story. — Emily Means

Northern Utah

Nudging space junk

University of Utah engineers have discovered a new way of cleaning up space junk using rapidly spinning magnets. Researchers said that robots could one day use this technology to move debris in space without actually touching it. Engineers could also use this to manipulate fragile objects. The Department of Defense tracks 27,000 pieces of softball size and larger space trash. It moves at high speeds, and can damage satellites and spacecraft. — Martha Harris

State invests in cybersecurity education program

The Utah Legislature is dedicating $5 million to a program preparing students for the technology industry. The Intermountain Intelligence, Industry, and Security Consortium, or I3SC, is a partnership between Utah State University, Utah Valley University and local tech companies. A main focus of the multi-disciplinary program is to teach students how to handle security challenges, like cyberattacks. Students will also be able to intern at local companies including Adobe, Northrop Grumman and USU’s Space Dynamics Lab. — Martha Harris

Region/Nation

Best advice on child vaccines

A COVID-19 vaccine for kids aged 5 to 11 is nearing the finish line for federal authorization. But it will likely face its own backlash and misinformation. Experts suggest avoiding social media and instead seeking advice from pediatricians and other trusted professionals who know a family’s health background. — Madelyn Beck, Mountain West News Bureau

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