Community Info

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Coronavirus Relief Fund Allocates $500,000 For Expanded Child Care

Posted By on Tue, May 26, 2020 at 11:00 AM

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Last week, Governor Doug Ducey announced that $500,000 from Arizona's Coronavirus Relief Fund had been allocated to 10 organizations providing out-of-school child care in the state.

The funding will support "extended hours and enrichment programs to meet the increased demand of child care for families while students distance learn and parents or guardians work." 

The funding will go to:
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Tucson
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Casa Grande
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Arizona
  • Boys & Girls Club of Flagstaff 
  • Boys & Girls Club of Round Valley
  • Boys & Girls Club of Bisbee
  • The CLUB for YOUth Kingman
  • Cobre Valley Youth Club
  • Patagonia Youth Enrichment Center

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It's FINE FREE time at the Library!

Posted By on Tue, May 26, 2020 at 10:00 AM

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Pima County Public Library has some great news to share!

WE'RE GOING FINE FREE!
  • If you have overdue fines on your account, they'll be cleared on July 1, 2020.
  • We're introducing auto-renew! This means we will automatically renew your items, unless there is a hold on them (sorry, you've got to return these items by the due date). Items will be auto-renewed up to 4 times! We will continue to send you email updates about auto-renewals and due dates.
You are still responsible for returning your items...


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Friday, May 22, 2020

Your Southern AZ COVID-19 PM Update for Friday, May 22: What We've Covered Today

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 5:30 PM

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We've come to the end of another work week, and to the beginning of Memorial Day Weekend. Let's take a look at the stories we've covered today.

  • The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Arizona topped 15,608 as of Friday, May 22, according to the morning report from the Arizona Department of Health Services.
  • The travel forecast for this Memorial Day weekend is fuzzy – just another victim of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • If you have Medicare and want to be tested for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the Trump administration has good news.
  • Good news, book lovers, the Pima County Public Library is switching to an auto-renew system this summer that will automatically renew your checkout instead of instituting a late fee.
  • On the heels of a pair of impressive performances this week, the Gaslight Music Hall in Oro Valley is hosting another two drive-in concerts next Wednesday and Thursday.
  • The Grand Canyon will reopen on a limited basis for Memorial Day weekend, a move critics call “premature” during the COVID-19 pandemic and “tone-deaf” in the face of startling infection rates in the neighboring Navajo Nation.
  • The YMCA in northwest Tucson reopened its doors to the community on Wednesday with added safety precautions and limited hours to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • The arts and crafts community around Cathey’s Sewing & Vacuum stores have kept busy during quarantine by sewing tens of thousands of masks for local hospitals, first responders, and law enforcement.
  • A former White House aide won a $3 million federal contract to supply respirator masks to Navajo Nation hospitals in New Mexico and Arizona 11 days after he created a company to sell personal protective equipment in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Cathey’s Sewing & Vacuum volunteers create 35,000 masks for first responders

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 4:00 PM

Judy Payne with bundles of mask kits at Cathey's Sewing & Vacuum - COURTESY JACKIE PAYNE
  • Courtesy Jackie Payne
  • Judy Payne with bundles of mask kits at Cathey's Sewing & Vacuum

The arts and crafts community around Cathey’s Sewing & Vacuum stores have kept busy during quarantine by sewing tens of thousands of masks for local hospitals, first responders and law enforcement.

The Tucson-based business is welcoming volunteers to sew face masks for essential workers at any of their three locations. Over the past two months, volunteers at the family business have produced an estimated 35,000 masks – and they don’t plan on stopping.

“Our purpose in doing this is to help the community,” said owner Donny Cathey. “Tucson and Southern Arizona have been unbelievably supportive of our family business and all the families that our business supports. I believe that any local business such as ours has a duty to give back to the community that supports it.”

The initiative began when the local non-profit Beads of Courage called Cathey to help Banner Health in making specialized masks. These masks are made with a blue-and-white sterilization wrap normally used with medical instruments.

The volunteer effort is spearheaded by Judy Payne, 59, who was disheartened when COVID-19 stopped her from attending many of her favorite activities, such as teaching quilting classes and babysitting her grandchildren.

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Limited Memorial Day reopening of Grand Canyon ‘premature,’ say critics

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 3:00 PM

COURTESY
  • Courtesy

PHOENIX – The Grand Canyon will reopen on a limited basis for Memorial Day weekend, a move critics call “premature” during the COVID-19 pandemic and “tone-deaf” in the face of startling infection rates in the neighboring Navajo Nation.

The opening, from Friday to Monday, is just the second at the park, which was completely closed to visitors on April 1 to stem the spread of the virus. The park also opened for four days last weekend on a limited basis.

Entry will be allowed to the South Rim from 4 a.m. to 10 a.m., with visitors who are in the park by then allowed to stay until sunset. Food service, bike rentals and a limited number of trails will be available, while residential areas, sit-down restaurants, visitor centers, museums, shuttle buses and some roads will remain closed.

The park said in a statement that it will follow state and federal guidelines for health safety, encouraging social distancing by limiting groups to 10, with park rangers ready to step in if needed.

“We’re encouraging people to recreate responsibly and to read up on any national park that they are going to, to find out what is open and closed,” said Lily Daniels, a spokeswoman for the park.

But critics said there is no reason to rush the reopening of the park.

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Mr. Boogie Woogie Trio, The Tributaries playing next week’s drive-in concerts at Gaslight Music Hall

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 2:00 PM

The Tributaries - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy photo
  • The Tributaries
On the heels of a pair of impressive performances this week, the Gaslight Music Hall in Oro Valley is hosting another two drive-in concerts next Wednesday and Thursday.

On Wednesday, May 27, Mr. Boogie Woogie Trio will play. The group, according to Gaslight manager, performer, public relations rep, and booker Heather Stricker, is a “hard-driving, old school, New Orleans style rhythm and blues’ group complemented by Boogie Woogie, “the fastest, flashiest, piano-thumping boogie man from the Netherlands.”

“Yes, that’s right,” Stricker told Tucson Local Media. “This Dutch-based, drive-by piano player hits hard and will take no prisoners. As soon as he starts pounding the ivories, you’ll be on your way to the Land of Good Times.”

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Pima County Public Libraries introducing auto-renewal system July 1

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 1:06 PM

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Good news, book lovers, the Pima County Public Library is switching to an auto-renew system this summer that will automatically renew your checkout instead of instituting a late fee.

The new program, which begins July 1, will allow for up to four auto-renewals on library items, unless an item is on hold for another member. The library will also send email reminders, and members are still responsible for returning their items.

Overdue fines on accounts will also be cleared July 1.

"We are grateful to the Pima County Board of Supervisors for approving this change,” said library director Amber Mathewson, in a statement. “We want everyone to use and feel welcome in the Library, regardless of any fines they've incurred. This is just one of the ways we can support our community, and we look forward to welcoming back many customers who may have stepped away from the library for a while.”

Any fees for collections, interlibrary loans or other services will remain on member accounts, though the fees can often be paid in increments. Items overdue by 30 days will be considered lost and billable unless it is later returned.

According to the library, any bills over $50 will be sent to a collection agency, and an additional $10 fee will be added to the account.

For more information, and to find library location, go online to library.pima.gov.

Got Medicare? Get a no-cost test for COVID-19

Posted By on Fri, May 22, 2020 at 12:30 PM

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If you have Medicare and want to be tested for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the Trump administration has good news.

Medicare covers tests with no out-of-pocket costs. You can get tested in your home, doctor’s office, a local pharmacy or hospital, a nursing home or a drive-through site. Medicare does not require a doctor’s order for you to get tested.

Testing is particularly important for older people and nursing home residents, who are often among the most vulnerable to COVID-19. Widespread access to testing is a critical precursor to a safe, gradual reopening of America. When a vaccine for COVID-19 is developed, Medicare will cover that, too.

For Medicare beneficiaries who are homebound and can’t travel, Medicare will pay for a trained laboratory technician to come to your home or residential nursing home to collect a test sample. (This doesn’t apply to people in a skilled nursing facility on a short-term stay under Medicare Part A, as the costs for this test, including sample collection, are already covered as part of the stay.)


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