It's Thursday. Start your morning with some of our top local headlines:
Vaccinations Cancelled In Yavapai, Coconino, Mohave Counties Amid Inclement Weather
Weekly shipments of the COVID-19 vaccine in Yavapai, Coconino, and Mohave counties have been delayed due to severe winter weather in other parts of the country. County officials say some vaccinations will be cancelled or rescheduled amid the inclement weather.
Yavapai Regional Medical Center cancelled its vaccination appointments for Thursday, Feb. 18 at the Prescott Gateway Mall. Spectrum Healthcare also cancelled appointments in Cottonwood and Prescott Valley.
The delay will affect hundreds of Humboldt and Prescott Unified School District employees waiting for a second dose, according to the Daily Courier.
Coconino County Vaccine Delay Affects 1,800 Residents, Officials Say
Coconino County’s impacted COVID-19 vaccination appointments include those at Fort Tuthill, Northern Arizona University, North Country Healthcare, and the Flagstaff Medical Center. County officials say appointments today and Friday will be cancelled and rescheduled; they estimate the cancellation will impact about 1,800 residents.
The delay comes after Coconino County officials expressed frustration at what they say was an already-limited allocation of vaccines from the state.
Mohave County: Moderna Vaccine Shipment Delays
Mohave County officials also say shipments of the Moderna vaccine are delayed due to weather in other parts of the country. The county released a statement Wednesday saying some providers have cancelled, or will cancel appointments this week. County officials did not list any specific cancellations, though individuals can check the status of their appointments with local providers and sites.
Navajo Code Talker Receives COVID-19 Vaccine
One of the last remaining Navajo Code Talkers has received the COVID-19 vaccine according to the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs. Thomas Begay received a dose of the vaccine at the Albuquerque VA Medical Center, department officials announced earlier this month. Begay was one of hundreds of Indigenous troops who used the Navajo language to create obstacles for Japanese soldiers during World War II. He also survived the 1945 Battle of Iwo Jima and later fought in the Korean War.
Bill Seeking To Raise Unemployment Insurance Progresses In State Legislature
A bill created to raise unemployment benefits for Arizonans has progressed through a committee in the House of Representatives. HB2805 seeks to raise the state’s minimum unemployment check to $300 a week. Currently, Arizonans can receive a maximum of $240 dollars a week through state unemployment benefits — one of the lowest weekly insurance rates in the country.
Republican Rep. David Cook proposed the bill, which passed unanimously with bipartisan support through the committee. The bill would boost the unemployment insurance rate starting Jan 1 if signed into law.