Riverside County coronavirus cases, hospitalizations continue to fall

Coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are continuing drop in Riverside County, according to numbers reported Wednesday Feb. 24. Officials recorded 419 new, daily cases and 12 deaths. State data showed that 406 patients were hospitalized with COVID-19, including 116 in intensive care units. The overall case positivity rate dropped to 7.6%, the lowest it’s been since Nov. 30. Here are the numbers as of Wednesday, according to state and county public health officials. Riverside County Confirmed cases: 288,960 total, up 419 from Tuesday, Feb. 23, averaging 271 reported per day in the past week Deaths: 3,707 total, up 12 from Tuesday, averaging 18.6 reported per day in the past week Hospital survey: 406 confirmed and 49 suspected patients hospitalized Tuesday, including 116 confirmed and six suspected patients in the ICU, with 21 of 21 facilities reporting. The number of confirmed patients is down 26.6% from a week earlier. Related Articles What’s next as COVID-19 vaccination drive comes under new management? San Bernardino County coronavirus cases, positivity rates keep dropping Mobile clinic vaccinates more than 100 San Bernardino seniors against coronavirus Coronavirus: These maps help show how…

Rep. Pete Aguilar’s bill seeks to keep white supremacists out of military

Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-San Bernardino, has introduced a bill with seven recommendations to prevent white nationalists from infiltrating the U.S. military — something a new Pentagon report says is already happening and is a continued threat. Aguilar’s bill would turn the recommendations from that report — which he had requested after seeing news coverage suggesting it was increasing problem — into law. “We should say, the overwhelming number of people serving in our country do so with the utmost respect for the constitution and their role,” Aguilar said. “However, there are limited exceptions that individuals do seek military service as a way to bolster their own standing in domestic terror groups.” The Department of Defense has said it will implement all but one of the recommendations in the report and is evaluating the final recommendation, but it’s important to make them legally binding so that future administrations can’t back away from those commitments, Aguilar said. That includes scanning recruits’ tattoos in a database to see if they are white nationalist symbols and working with the FBI to develop an unclassified version of the FBI’s Ethnically…

Claremont appoints longtime financial officer to city manager’s post

After serving in the role for four months with an interim title, Adam Pirrie this week stepped into the Claremont city manager’s position permanently. Adam Pirrie (Courtesy of the City of Claremont) In a 5-0 vote on Tuesday, Feb. 23, the City Council approved a one-year contract with Pirrie with optional one-year extensions. Since October, Pirrie has held the interim title and has continued his work as finance director, which he will be allowed to continue, according to the agreement. The city will allow Pirrie to hire or enlist support to assist with his day-to-day work in the finance department. The iterim appointment of Pirrie came after previous City Manager Tara Schultz abruptly announced she would be leaving the role. Schultz and the City Council reached a mutual agreement on her resignation, the city said then. The decision to keep Pirrie in both roles for the past four months has resulted in savings of $95,886, the according to the city. Starting a search for a new city manager would have resulted in $30,000 in costs and would have taken six to nine months to complete.…

San Bernardino County coronavirus cases, positivity rates keep dropping

Coronavirus cases, hospitalizations are continuing to drop in San Bernardino County, numbers released Wednesday, Feb. 24, show. County officials reported 253 new, daily cases and 22 deaths. State data showed 396 people remained hospitalized with COVID-19, including 112 in intensive care units. The overall case positivity rate dropped to 6.1%, the lowest it’s been since mid-November. Here are the latest numbers, according to county and state public health officials. San Bernardino County Confirmed cases: 285,334 total, up 253 from Tuesday, Feb. 23, averaging 371 reported per day in the past week Deaths: 2,673 total, up 22 from Tuesday, averaging 30.9 reported per day in the past week Hospital survey: 396 confirmed and 36 suspected patients hospitalized Tuesday, including 112 confirmed and six suspected patients in the ICU, with 25 of 25 facilities reporting. The number of confirmed patients is down 28.9% from a week earlier. Tests: 2,441,718 total, up 8,295 from Tuesday, averaging 9,245 reported per day in the past week Resolved cases (estimate): 280,235 total, up 376 from Tuesday, averaging 431 per day in the past week Vaccinations: The county and other providers have…

Mobile clinic vaccinates more than 100 San Bernardino seniors against coronavirus

More than 100 older residents were vaccinated against the novel coronavirus Wednesday, Feb. 24, by one of San Bernardino County’s two mobile vaccination vans. Nurse practitioner Dornel Lewis gives Luis Macias, a 65-year-old San Bernardino resident, the COVID-19 vaccine at the Fifth Street Senior Center in San Bernardino on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (Photo by Will Lester, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin/SCNG) Nurse practitioner Dornel Lewis prepares a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine for a patient at the Fifth Street Senior Center in San Bernardino on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (Photo by Will Lester, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin/SCNG) A nurse injects a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine into a patient’s arm at the Fifth Street Senior Center in San Bernardino on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (Photo by Will Lester, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin/SCNG) Ontario resident Amelia Acuna, 66, tells registered nurse Joy Bolaji which arm she wants her COVID-19 vaccine injection in at the Fifth Street Senior Center in San Bernardino on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (Photo by Will Lester, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin/SCNG) Registered nurse Loretta Rivera gets information from a patient prior to giving…

Coronavirus: These maps help show how the vaccine rollout is going in every U.S. state

The Path to Immunity Historical trends show there are different challenges to getting shots in arms, depending on where people live. On Feb. 24,  Surgo Ventures unveiled a data tool: The U.S. COVID-19 Vaccine Coverage Index to track major barriers in getting people vaccinated. The index was created to assist federal, state and county decisionmakers in identifying which communities face challenges to vaccine coverage and why, based on the community-level barriers affecting COVID-19 vaccine uptake. The index captures 28 supply and demand factors through five different themes. Surgo’s news release said the index’s modular design helps contextualize vaccine rollout performance and highlight inequities across communities – helping keep a pulse on the pace of efforts to ensure equitable, efficient vaccination. This map shows counties with the highest and lowest levels of concern of distributing the vaccine to its population, according to the index. Click on the map to go to the site and see how each county compares. The five themes that make up the index are: Historic under vaccination Socio-     demographic barriers Resource-constrained health systems Healthcare accessibility barriers Irregular care-seeking behavior According to…

Riverside County urges residents to get tested for coronavirus

Worried that a drop in testing could delay the easing of coronavirus business restrictions, Riverside County officials on Wednesday, Feb. 24 urged the public to get tested for COVID-19. The county’s test rate, which rose to 800 test per 100,000 residents last year, now stands at 361.4 per 100,000, a county news release read. That’s below the state median testing rate of 386.4 per 100,000, meaning the county’s daily rate of new cases is adjusted upward. As of Tuesday, Feb. 23, the county’s adjusted case per 100,000 residents was 16.6, according to the state Department of Public Health. It needs to be between 4 and 7 per 100,000 for the county to move from the purple tier, or most restrictive tier of COVID-19 business restrictions, to the red tier, which will allow certain businesses to operate more freely and handle more customers indoors. Related Articles San Bernardino County coronavirus cases, positivity rates keep dropping Mobile clinic vaccinates more than 100 San Bernardino seniors against coronavirus Coronavirus: These maps help show how the vaccine rollout is going in every U.S. state Coronavirus tracker: California reported 6,247…

New report IDs top priorities for Black students in Riverside, San Bernardino counties

Academic success, Black history and college access are the top three priorities for Black students and their parents in the Inland Empire, according to a first-of-its-kind report focused on local communities and their perspectives on education. The report, “The Inland Empire Black Education Agenda,” released Friday, Feb. 19, was led by BLU Educational foundation in San Bernardino, which provides educational services and resources for area youth and adults, in collaboration with Center for Social Innovation at UC Riverside and the Inland Empire Black Equity Initiative. Key priorities named The study, which includes a survey of nearly 1,100 Black parents, students and community members in the Inland Empire, recommends five major area of focus to improve Black students’ educational experience: Academic success Black history College and career access Effective teachers High school graduation rates The report also calls for more equitable Local Control and Accountability Plans, three-year plans developed by school districts that describe the goals, action, services and expenditures to support student achievement, and the creation and funding of an equity office at the school district level. The survey stemmed from perceptions within the Black…

Coronavirus tracker: California reported 6,247 new cases and 275 new deaths reported Feb. 23

The end-of-day totals from California public health websites for Tuesday, Feb. 23, registered 6,247 new cases of the coronavirus, bringing the total number of cases there have been in the state to 3,519,289. The 14-day total of new cases, 6,956, is down 83.5% from the Jan. 1 high of 42,268. There were 275 new deaths reported Tuesday, for a total of 49,876 people in California who have died from the virus. Hospitalizations continue to decline as well. There were 6,764 hospitalizations of people with coronavirus-related infections reported on Tuesday. That’s a 70.4% drop since the Jan. 1 high of 22,853 people who needed hospital care. Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Johns Hopkins University, the World Health Organization, the California Department of Public Health, The Associated Press, reporting counties and news sources

$650 million Santa Ana River plan adds fish-saving methods to water-saving projects

The San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District has decided to join them, not fight them. Stymied by environmental barriers and losses in court for 11 years, the large water wholesaler serving 700,000 residential and business customers from Fontana to Yucaipa is on the precipice of releasing an environmentally based plan that would nearly double its supply of water by diverting billions of gallons from the Upper Santa Ana River, while mitigating the effects on 20 indigenous fish and bird species. Water managers in both San Bernardino and Riverside counties describe this two-sided effort as balanced, ecologically friendly and massive in scope, but also necessary to keep up with the water demands of a growing Inland Empire. Biologists Chris Jones, left, and Kai Palenscar, with the San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District, wade thought shallow water as they survey the Sunnyslope Creek at the Louis Robidoux Nature Center in Jurupa Valley on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. The water district will release its habit conversation plan for the upper Santa Ana River and its tributaries next month. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) Biologist Kai Palenscar, with…

University of La Verne receives $400,000 grant to boost diversity among teachers

The University of La Verne has received a $400,000 grant as part of an initiative designed to diversify the teaching profession in the region. The college this month announced it will partner with the Branch Alliance for Educator Diversity, also known as BranchEd, for a three-year project. The grant will be awarded to the university’s LaFetra College of Education to revamp programming to be more inclusive of students of color and create pathways for them to teach in nearby communities. The alliance’s National Teacher Preparation Transformation Center program will provide the university and its K-12 school district partner, Pomona Unified School District, access to enhanced resources and professional development, along with opportunities to network with other educators and share data. “We hope to be an example of how removing barriers and obstacles that disproportionately impact our educators of color will provide a pipeline of excellence from and back into our communities that we serve,” Kimberly White-Smith, dean of the LaFetra College of Education, said in a news release. Part of these efforts will include the university’s new Transforming and Overcoming Barriers in Teacher Education Program,…

Free, outdoor fitness center opens at Rancho Cucamonga park

Picture This: A gym with squishy mats for yoga, a series of geometric blocks for squats and lunges, and bolted-down ladders, low-and-high rings and metal bars for pull-ups, push ups, curls and pec stretches. Sounds like the inside of a gym but this one is completely outdoors and is free. Andrew Felix, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, uses the pull-up bar as he exercises at the out outdoor fitness center in the Central Park next to the Pacific Electric Trail in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) A woman passes by the outdoor fitness center as she jogs with her dog on the Pacific Electric Trail near the Central Park in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) Andrew Felix, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, exercises at the out outdoor fitness center in the Central Park next to the Pacific Electric Trail in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) Andrew Felix, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, exercises at the out outdoor fitness center in the Central Park next…

New Fitness Center, an outdoor gym, opens at Rancho Cucamonga park

Picture This: A gym with squishy mats for yoga, a series of geometric blocks for squats and lunges, and bolted-down ladders, low-and-high rings and metal bars for pull-ups, push ups, curls and pec stretches. Sounds like the inside of a gym but this one is completely outdoors and is free. Andrew Felix, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, uses the pull-up bar as he exercises at the out outdoor fitness center in the Central Park next to the Pacific Electric Trail in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) A woman passes by the outdoor fitness center as she jogs with her dog on the Pacific Electric Trail near the Central Park in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) Andrew Felix, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, exercises at the out outdoor fitness center in the Central Park next to the Pacific Electric Trail in Rancho Cucamonga on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) Andrew Felix, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, exercises at the out outdoor fitness center in the Central Park next…

San Bernardino to discuss potential conflicts of interest in Carousel Mall overhaul

San Bernardino leaders will discuss potential conflicts of interest regarding the Carousel Mall redevelopment during a special meeting Wednesday, Feb. 24. Councilwoman Kimberly Calvin proposed scheduling such a webinar at the conclusion of last week’s City Council meeting. According to an agenda posted on the city’s website, elected officials also will consider a censure process related to conflicts and violations of the city charter, city municipal code, city code of conduct or state laws, and determine whether real or perceived improprieties warrant a rejection of the current bidding process involving the Carousel Mall. On Jan. 27, council members heard two very different proposals for redeveloping the shuttered shopping center in downtown San Bernardino. Related links Riverwalk, rooftop gardens, yoga pitched for Carousel Mall site in San Bernardino San Bernardino leaders say decision on Carousel Mall overhaul due in March Carousel Mall proposals go before San Bernardino leaders this week San Bernardino to evaluate cost of demolishing Carousel Mall property A developer was expected to be chosen March 3. SCG America and the team of Renaissance Downtowns USA and ICO Real Estate are the finalists. The…

Carolyn Tillman: Reflections on 25 years of service, family history, and dreams for the future

By Cynthia Mendoza Pandemic restrictions aside, Carolyn Tillman began 2021 with nothing to do so to speak; no checking emails, no ringing phones, and no jam packed calendar. Welcome to retirement. At the end of 2020, Tillman retired from San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools (SBCSS) after nearly 25 years of service as Special Assistant to the Superintendent. Tillman, who holds a degree in speech pathology/audiology from Loma Linda University, joined SBCSS in the fall of 1996 and served as Special Assistant to the Superintendent overseeing various programs throughout the years, including SBCSS Wellness Strategic Plan, the state funded Nutrition Education Program, a regional coordinator for the California Department of Education’s Safe Schools Program, and a manager in the Foster Youth Services initiative.  In her role as Special Assistant to the Superintendent, Tillman did what she most loves – working with people. The role was one of serving as a connection between the various sectors of community such as businesses, chambers of commerce, law enforcement, and others, and as a liaison that brought community concerns and feedback directly to the superintendent, and then relaying responses…

Upland mayor opens up nominations to water board, doesn’t rule out himself

Bill Velto was elected mayor of Upland in November 2020. (Courtesy image) Upland Mayor Bill Velto de-fused two potentially explosive issues aimed at him Monday night, Feb. 22, one in which he tried to appoint himself to a local water board and another involving a ballot measure that would do away with the directly elected mayor. In both matters, the City Council — including Velto, who was elected mayor in November with 33% of the vote — agreed to compromises that could resolve both issues in the next few weeks. Councilwoman Janice Elliott wanted to pursue a ballot measure that would remove from voters the practice of directly electing the mayor separate from the rest of the five-member council, part of Upland’s governance since 1970. Instead, the mayor’s spot would rotate yearly among the five council members. Elliott said the reason for having a rotating mayor was to allow more input from council members in selecting members of the seven-member Planning Commission from their districts. The Planning Commission has come under increased scrutiny due to approvals and disapprovals of warehouse projects near residential communities. In…

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