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Morning Rundown: Wednesday, July 28

Angela Gervasi

It’s Wednesday, July 28. Monsoon activity in northern Arizona has far outpaced precipitation in the 2020 season, according to figures released this morning by the National Weather Service. The NWS has documented 6.01 in. of rain so far this monsoon season at the Flagstaff Pulliam Airport, compared to just 1.78 in. the previous year between June 15 and Sept. 30. Show Low has received 8.11 in. of rain this summer, so far, compared to 2.22 in. in 2020. 

Ducey Knocks CDC Guidelines, AZ Lags In Vaccinations 

Gov.Doug Ducey is publicly criticizing recent changes in Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for preventing COVID-19. The CDC has shifted to recommend that fully vaccinated individuals wear face coverings indoors for regions with substantial or high transmission. The CDC currently identifies more than half of the 15 Ariz. counties as high transmission areas, including Mohave and Yavapai counties.

Credit Angela Gervasi

The CDC also pivoted to encourage masking for all individuals in schools. Ducey pointed to recent state legislation barring such mandates in Ariz. schools. Earlier this summer, Ducey passed an executive order prohibiting similar precautions in public universities. Ducey critiqued the recent shift, saying Arizona would not reverse its own legislation.

“We’ve passed all of this into law, and it will not change,” Ducey wrote Tuesday. 

He’s continued to encourage vaccination; about 51.7% of the state’s population has received at least one dose, lagging behind neighboring New Mexico and California

1 Dead After Vehicle Submerged In Floodwaters On Hopi 

Hopi law enforcement says one man has died after a vehicle became stuck in floodwaters on Indian Route 6720 at the southwestern region of the Hopi reservation. Tribal officials say they arrived at the scene after receiving the report early Sunday evening; two adults were found outside the mostly-submerged vehicle and were transported to the Tuba City Regional Health Care Center, according to a police report. Coconino County Search and Rescue personnel found an additional, unidentified adult man inside the vehicle; he was pronounced dead. 

Chances for area precipitation are expected to increase tomorrow, with a 64% chance for rain in nearby Tuba City, Thursday and a 67% chance in Kykotsmovi, according to the National Weather Service. 

Flooding Hits Roads On Navajo

Navajo Dept. of Transportation personnel are working to repair roads in more than two dozen communities after flooding last week, according to tribal officials. Dilkon, Many Farms, Dennehotso, and Indian Wells were among the affected areas. Personnel could not yet approach the Blue Gap community for repairs due to muddy conditions, according to President Jonathan Nez’s office Tuesday. Jonathan Manygoats of the Dilkon Chapter Farm Board told KNAU last week one earthen dam had already been destroyed amid the heavy monsoon activity.

Conservative Org Sues Flagstaff Over Housing Regulations

The Ariz.-based Goldwater Institute says it filed litigation totalling more than $23 million in claims against the City of Flagstaff. Executive Vice President Christina Sandefur says the lawsuits are in response to the city’s High Occupancy Housing Plan, an initiative the city enacted amid increasing demand for high-density housing near Northern Arizona University. Sandefur says the city has violated the rights of property owners.

“We hope the city will take the severe financial and economic consequences of its actions into consideration as it contemplates its response to these demand letters,” Sandefur wrote

The city says it’s reviewing the lawsuits, according to the Arizona Daily Sun, who first reported the story.


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