Southern Arizona COVID-19 Weekly Roundup

The COVID-19 Centric Stories We Covered

THE LOCAL NUMBERS: The number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases in Arizona topped 21,000 as of Tuesday, June 2, according to the Arizona Department of Health Services. Pima County had seen 2,496 of the state's 21,250 confirmed cases. COVID-19 had killed 941 people statewide, including 191 in Pima County, according to the report. In Maricopa County, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases had risen to 10,536. Roughly two weeks after Gov. Doug Ducey lifted Arizona's stay-at-home order, Arizona hospitals are seeing a rise in the number of people hospitalized with COVID symptoms, as well as more people visiting emergency rooms. The Arizona Department of Health Services reports that as of June 1, a record number of 1,009 Arizonans in the hospital had tested positive for COVID-19 or were suspected to have the virus. The report shows 569 people arrived at emergency rooms with COVID-like symptoms on June 1.

THE NATIONAL NUMBERS: Nationwide, more than 1.79 million people had tested positive for the novel coronavirus, which had killed an estimated 104,450 people as of Tuesday, June 2, according to tracking by Johns Hopkins University.

STAY-AT-HOME-AFTER-DARK ORDER: A protest against police violence turned violent in downtown Tucson on Friday night, when rioters smashed windows, painted graffiti and otherwise went wild in downtown Tucson. The protest was one of many across the country following the killing of George Floyd, who died in police custody after a Minneapolis Police Officer kneeled on his neck for more than eight minutes as the black man gasped for air and said he couldn't breathe. Following Friday's riot, Tucson Mayor Regina Romero and Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus asked the public to not attend a Saturday protest. A few hundred people still turned out on Saturday night for a protest march that went smoothly until protestors attempted to march back downtown and clashed with police. Following a looting spree at Scottsdale's Fashion Square on Saturday night, Gov. Doug Ducey declared a nightly curfew from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. The curfew will continue through June 8 unless extended. During the curfew, members of the public are prohibited from "using, standing, sitting, traveling or being present on any public street or in any public place, including for the purpose of travel," according to the Tucson Police Department. There are many exceptions, including police, firefighters, emergency responders, medical personnel, National Guard and members of the media. People are allowed to travel to and from work, make deliveries, get food, care for a family member, friend or animal, have dinner, get a drink at a bar or do almost anything other than protest or riot.

LET US OUT, WE'VE HAD ENOUGH: There's a big partisan divide on whether the state is reopening too quickly, but most Arizonans are ready to get the hell out of their houses, according to a poll out last week. Roughly 41 percent of voters surveyed by political consulting firm HighGround say the state is moving "too fast" to reopen and get back to business. But roughly 39 percent say the reopening pace is "just about right." Another 19 percent say they don't know. Despite that split, the poll found most Arizonans are ready to resume at least some of their normal activities. Three-fourths of those surveyed say they are at least probably ready to get back to hosting friends and family, 74 percent say they are probably ready to gather in groups of 10 or fewer, about two-thirds are probably ready to go shopping and nearly 60 percent are probably ready to go back to restaurants.

SPREADING THE WEALTH AROUND: The Tucson City Council approved a strategic plan this week to distribute $95.7 million from the federal CARES Act. Among the provisions, according to a city press release: $22 million in community aid including forgivable grants for small business and nonprofits, rental and utility assistance, funds for distance learning and wifi access, domestic violence prevention, childcare and food delivery for seniors; $38 million in funding for the continuity of city operations and services, including meeting the payroll needs of our first responders; and $33 million in reserves for Mayor and Council to assess future needs and allocate funds.

HUNGRY FOR ANOTHER BITE AT THE APPLE: The Arizona Attorney General's Office dismissed a complaint against the Pima County Board of Supervisors over regulations for restaurants on a legal technicality. The complaint was filed by Sen. Vince Leach and Reps. Mark Finchem and Bret Roberts after supervisors voted 3-2 to create new rules related to the "best practices" strategy developed by the county's Back To Business Task Force. But the board later voted 3-2 to revise the rules, repealing the original proclamation that was the basis of the complaint. That rendered the complaint moot, according to the AG's Office. The GOP lawmakers told the Green Valley News that they will file a new complaint regarding the revised regulations.

—Additional reporting from Kathleen B. Kunz, Austin Counts, Jeff Gardner, Logan Burtch-Buus and Tara Foulkrod

About The Author

Comments (1)

Add a comment

Add a Comment

Tucson Weekly

Best of Tucson Weekly

Tucson Weekly