Idaho gained 725 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 over Labor Day weekend, including 240 new cases today, according to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. That leaves the total at 33,981, of which an estimated 16,956 have recovered and 389 have died. The death toll has increased by seven since Friday.
The state confirmed one more positive case among Blaine County residents since Friday, raising the total to 589 confirmed and 18 probable.
In other news, the governor makes a move to help stimulate economic recovery, the airport looks to a groundbreaking improvement and an aggressive moose takes to Adams Gulch. Here are those and more top stories from Tuesday, Sept. 8.
• Gov. Brad Little approved the transfer of $200 million of federal coronavirus relief funds to Idaho’s Unemployment Trust Fund last week. Little’s office stated that without the additional funds, businesses may have had to pay nearly double the amount of unemployment insurance taxes next year to keep the trust fund solvent. The governor said this move will be an important step on Idaho’s path to economic recovery.
• The Federal Aviation Administration has approved a new instrument approach procedure for the E175 regional jets used by Delta and United Airlines. What that means for Friedman Memorial Airport is that pilots should be able to make more precise landings in low-visibility conditions, translating to far fewer diversions this winter than usual. Airport Manager Chris Pomery said this could likely be one of the “biggest game-changing improvements” in Friedman’s history.
• The Idaho Department of Fish and Game is advising hikers and bikers to exercise caution when in Adams Gulch after an aggressive cow moose charged a family of three with two leashed dogs on Friday. Officials reminded hikers that moose should always be given a wide berth and dogs should be leashed. Moose may see even leashed dogs as threats and mothers are particularly protective of their calves.
• Blaine County School District students returned to classrooms today for the first time since they were sent home for remote learning in mid-March. New health precautions will be enforced and students will attend in-person classes on alternating days.
Our photographer Roland Lane captured an unusual first day of school. Click here to view his photo gallery.
• The Hailey Public Library will reopen for in-person browsing this Friday. Masks will be required and attendance limited, but computers will be open in hour-long slots.
• A fair amount of uncertainty may still surround fall sports, but that won’t be bothering Carey’s football team. The Panthers are off to a flying start this season, having thrashed Garden Valley 78-42 in their second game.
For more local and regional news, pick up a copy of tomorrow’s Idaho Mountain Express, or visit mtexpress.com at any time.