KNAU's Morning Rundown: Tuesday, May 4

May 4, 2021


Ducey Rejects Board Of Examiners Renewal After 15 Die In Assisted Living Facility

Gov. Doug Ducey says he’s moving to transfer power away from the Board of Examiners of Nursing Care Institution Administrators and Assisted Living Facility Managers. 

Ducey’s announcement comes after an Arizona Republic investigation found at least 15 residents of Granite Creek Health and Rehabilitation Center in Prescott died of COVID-19 under alleged mismanagement. 

The Republic found the Board had hired an administrator who allowed and encouraged employees to work after contracting COVID-19. Ducey vetoed a bill on Monday that would have renewed the Board’s power for another eight years; the governor says he’s working with the legislature to transfer licensing and regulation powers to the Department of Health Services. 

Native Women Running MMIW Event Kicks Off

The group Native Women Running will kick off a virtual event Wednesday to commemorate missing and murdered Indigenous women. Verna Volker, a member of the Navajo Nation, is the founder of the group. The Virtual Event encourages participants to run, walk or engage in other forms of movement to express solidarity with girls, women and third gender, or Two Spirits, who have faced violence.

FCC To Offer Monthly Discounts For Broadband On Tribal Lands 

The Federal Communications Commission says it’s offering a monthly discount to people living on tribal lands who install broadband internet service. Households are eligible for a discount of up to $75 a month. The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program will begin Tuesday, May 12. Navajo Nation officials encourage members to apply; the U.S. Census reports in a 2015-2019 that 26.4% of households on the Navajo Nation have a broadband internet subscription.

NAU Buys Historic Williams Ranch, Says Programming In The Works

Northern Arizona University says it’s purchasing the historic Hat Ranch near Williams. The ranch’s current owners say it was the site of visits from Presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt and George W. Bush. NAU officials say the property will be used for research opportunities for students exploring climate change, forest ecosystems, soil management, and other fields; specific programs have not been released. Money for the purchase will come from a donation made by Joanna Sturm, a philanthropist and descendent of President Theodore Roosevelt.

NAH To Mull Change In Visitation Policies

A spokesperson for Northern Arizona Healthcare says leaders will meet this week to discuss a change in visitation policy. NAH, along with other hospitals statewide and nationwide, restricted most visitations during the pandemic. The healthcare provider allows exceptions for patients who can receive visitors — including women in labor, and end-of-life patients. The Yavapai Regional Medical Center in late February loosened visitation restrictions, maintaining limited protocols. Statewide, COVID-19 hospitalizations have fluctuated in recent days but remain far lower than numbers reported during Arizona’s January surge; as of Monday, 613 people statewide were hospitalized for the virus, ADHS says.