Inland Empire

State Closely Monitoring County After Continued Surge in Coronavirus Cases

California is seeing record numbers of coronavirus cases after appearing to flatten the curve. Riverside County’s spike is so concerning, Governor Gavin Newsom ordered the accelerated reopenings to be dialed back. Restaurants can no longer have indoor dining and bars were ordered closed. Bruce Barton Riverside County’s Director of Emergency Management says the state is monitoring our county closely and more action will be taken if the surge continues, “We’ve been told in no uncertain terms that the state will continue to evaluate and they will continue to take the actions that are necessary to blunt the surge that is going on statewide.”   In the last two weeks alone the county has seen nearly 6,000 new cases. “Our testing positivity rate in the last few weeks has gone up the statewide benchmark is to not be over 8 percent and we’ve been, we’re up in the 13 percent area right now,” says Barton. Surge in hospitalizations and ICU capacity are two of the reasons the county is on the state’s watch list.  Barton says the theory that people from outside our county and country are…

San Bernardino County sees more than 500 new coronavirus cases, 4 new deaths

The number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases in San Bernardino County increased by 4 percent Friday from Thursday, from 13,152 to 13,676, according to county data. Four more deaths were reported Friday, pushing the county total to 269. The fatality rate is 2 percent, according to the county data. A recent surge in novel coronavirus cases following the reopening of many businesses last month forced California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday, July 1, to order 19 Southern California counties to suspend indoor operations at restaurants, wineries and tasting rooms for the next least three weeks. Those counties include San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, and Los Angeles. Friday’s numbers also showed that 151,269 people in San Bernardino County have now been tested for the novel coronavirus — a 1.7 percent increase from Thursday, while 7,800 people have now recovered, a more than 4 percent increase over Thursday’s total of 7,461. Fontana, Ontario and San Bernardino have led the charge in conducting the most testing to date, with 15,878 people tested in Fontana, 11,754 in Ontario, and 18,216 in San Bernardino, according to county data. The number of…

Coronavirus cases continue rising in Riverside County

Novel coronavirus cases and deaths continued to rise Friday in Riverside County, showing a 3.75 percent increase in confirmed cases and 14 deaths reported overnight, according to the latest update on the county’s public health website. The county is now at 19,450 confirmed cases, an additional 730 from Thursday’s count of 18,720 cases. Reported deaths are now at 479, a nearly 3 percent increase over Thursday’s count, which was 465. The weekday updates are available on the county’s coronavirus webpage. Along with the numbers of confirmed cases, deaths and recoveries, the website also provides the number of people hospitalized and the number of people who have been tested for the potentially deadly virus, among other things. Hospitalizations also continued to show an increase on Friday, with 462 compared to 429 on Thursday – an increase of more than 7 percent. Of those in hospitals, more than 120 are housed in an ICU, according to the county’s data. And as of Friday, 245,345 people had been tested, up more than 1.4 percent from Thursday’s count of more than 242,000.

Home Depot changes rope sales practice after nooses are found in store

Home Depot has changed the way it sells rope after a customer reported finding nooses hanging in a North Carolina store — the latest in a series of similar incidents at its stores in recent years. In early June, as the nation faced widespread protests over the killing of George Floyd, a Charlotte resident said she found two nooses hanging in a local Home Depot. She told a local news station she was shocked to find the knots displayed openly on store shelves. Home Depot released a statement saying it was “appalled and disturbed by the incident.” But it wasn’t the first time Home Depot was alerted to nooses in its stores. As a result, the company has decided to sell shorter, pre-cut lengths of rope instead of rope wrapped on large spools. “Unfortunately, we’ve had some instances where spooled rope was used to create hate symbols and we’re not going to tolerate it,” Home Depot spokesperson Margaret Smith told CNN Business on Thursday. The hangman’s noose knot is widely regarded as a threatening symbol of racism and hatred. In American history, noose knots were commonly used to hang African Americans during routine lynchings that have…

Big Bear and Running Springs-bound motorists should avoid Highway 330 this weekend

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Ontario man’s hand amputated after firework injury

An Ontario man was recovering Friday in a hospital after his left hand was blown off in a firework-related accident, police said. The man, in his 30s, was lighting illegal aerial fireworks in the area of Sixth Street and Virginia Avenue about 7:40 p.m. Thursday, July 2. “He lit the firework; it didn’t detonate, and so he approached it again, and that’s when it went off,”  Ontario police Officer Eliseo Guerrero said. Police seized the remaining illegal fireworks from the man’s residence, then cited him for illlegal use of fireworks, police said. Fireworks, whether “safe and sane” or not, are prohibited in Ontario. Violators face a $1,000 fine.

Riverside actress, 17, finds joy in theater

When Audrey Gall was 7 years old, she became obsessed with the original cast recording of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s “The Phantom of the Opera.” So, for her 8th birthday, her family got her tickets to see the musical at the Pantages in Los Angeles. Riverside actress Audrey Gall, 17, has loved theater since she was a child. (Photo courtesy of Nancy Gettinger) “As I sat in my seat watching the show I was absolutely mesmerized,” said the lifelong Riverside resident, now 17. “I remember thinking to myself ‘I want to do that.’ Thus my obsession with theater began.” Gall began taking dance lessons, followed by voice lessons. And she began doing shows throughout the Inland region. That was how she began picking up acting skills, adding a few master classes recently to hone her talents. “Audrey knew exactly what she wanted to do with her life from the time she was very little,” her mother, Gina Gall, said. When asked about favorite roles, Gall quickly listed a handful, including the title character in “Peter Pan” at Junior University, Ruth in “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers”…

What and how do poets write during coronavirus times?

What is it possible to write about, and how, now that we are in the midst of this historic situation? For the fortunate ones, like myself, retired, no young children around to home school while maintaining a job from home — unlike my grown children who live far away — and with what seems like infinite, if sequestered time ahead of me, there is — or was, especially at first — a feeling of pressure. Judy Kronenfeld’s most recent collections of poetry are “Bird Flying through the Banquet,” “Shimmer,” and “Light Lowering in Diminished Sevenths.” Her poems have appeared in Cimarron Review, Ghost Town, New Ohio Review, One (Jacar Press), Rattle, Sequestrum, South Florida Poetry Journal, Valparaiso Poetry Review and in more than two dozen anthologies. (Photo courtesy of Judy Kronenfeld) If Shakespeare wrote “King Lear” during a period of plague, the writer’s superego may ask, what are you accomplishing now, writer, even if you’re feeling unfocused, or scattered, or depressed or scared? Better take advantage of more uninterrupted time than you’ve ever imagined, unpunctuated by social events with family and friends, anything more than…

High-speed train could soon go from Apple Valley to Las Vegas

Caltrans has entered into a lease agreement allowing XpressWest, a Brightline company, to use existing State right-of-way along Interstate15 for high-speed passenger rail service between the Town of Apple Valley and Las Vegas.  The proposed XpressWest project will construct a 170-mile long, electric high-speed passenger rail system that will run along I-15’s median, protected by barriers.  Approximately 135 miles of the system will be in California.  The project will be privately financed.  XpressWest expects to create more than 10,000 jobs during the project’s construction with another 500 permanent new jobs post-construction. No word yet on when this project will begin or an estimated time of completion.

Riverside NAACP to discuss police reform July 6

The Riverside chapter of the NAACP will meet online Monday, July 6, to discuss police reform, and is asking for community input. The meeting, which also serves as a general membership meeting, will include Riverside Police Chief Larry Gonzalez. Related Articles Foothill Family Shelter works through coronavirus closures, continues to help Inland Empire families ‘Someone had to do it’: Volunteers repaint Mount Rubidoux cross after vandalism Asian American groups call for crackdown on racism in coronavirus era Latino Restaurant Association helps feed health-care workers in San Bernardino, Riverside and Colton Newly ordained priest Father Antonio Guzman will serve at Riverside parish The meeting begins at 6 p.m. People can make reservations by calling 951-324-9603 or join at https://bit.ly/3eELk4n 

Foothill Family Shelter works through coronavirus closures, continues to help Inland Empire families

Foothill Family Shelter has been housing homeless adults and children while helping to guide them on the path to self-sustainability since 1984. The organization offers transitional housing to families in Upland, Ontario, Montclair, Pomona, Claremont and Rancho Cucamonga. Families in the program reside in a fully furnished apartment, rent and utility free and are expected to participate in the organization’s programs. Programs include weekly case management, therapy, and job services. Clients are also expected to seek out employment and save 50% of their income, which is put in a trust and is returned when they leave. Helping families regain independence and manage their finances, the organization also works to break the cycle of poverty. Even through the coronavirus pandemic, the organization has continued its mission but has faced new challenges. “When COVID hit our biggest priority was our families,” said Megan Nehamen, the organization’s executive director. “We are helping families who have underlying barriers to begin with, and they were the first to see a reduction in hours, layoffs and furloughs.” Foothill Family Shelter’s clients are also faced with challenges of securing childcare while they…

UC Riverside Medical School gets $25 million, can double size

UC Riverside’s School of Medicine received $25 million in ongoing funding in the state budget signed this week, which school officials say will allow them to double the number of doctors they train, from 250 to 500. The expansion will be gradual, reaching 125 students in each upcoming class by about 2025 as hiring and building takes off. That will allow the school to help address the Inland Empire’s doctor shortage, said Deborah Deas, the vice chancellor for health sciences and dean of the School of Medicine. Riverside and San Bernardino County have 35 primary care physicians per 100,000 people, about half the recommended ratio of 60 to 80 primary care physicians per 100,000, according to the California Health Care Foundation. Since many of UCR’S students plan to practice medicine in the region, the funding benefits patients as well, Deas said. “The funding is tremendous to the school as well as the community because it really allows us to fulfill the mission of the School of Medicine,” Deas said Thursday, July 2. “That is to develop clinical and research programs to serve the underserved as well…

Rangers: Keep Campfires in Designated Spots, No Fireworks in National Forest

IDYLLWILD (CNS) – Campgrounds and recreational sites in the San Bernardino National Forest are likely to be visited by large numbers of people seeking fresh air and open spaces this holiday weekend, according to the U.S. Forest Service, and the agency reminded visitors to be safety conscious about lighting fires. USFS rangers said fireworks of any kind are prohibited in the national forest during the Fourth of July — or anytime. They also emphasized the need for visitors to follow the rules when it comes to igniting campfires. Rangers said federal firefighters last month knocked down two small brush fires that were the result of illegally lit campfires in the San Bernardino National Forest. About one-third of the 676,000-acre preserve is in Riverside County, and the remaining two-thirds in San Bernardino County, to the north. According to the USFS, rangers will be out in force Friday to Sunday, inspecting sites to ensure campfires are within designated spaces. Wood and charcoal fires are permitted in established metal fire rings in camping areas. Backpackers and campers who set up tents in remote locations and want to use…

Stocks rise after jobs report

Wall Street cheered the better-than-expected June jobs report Thursday, but investor enthusiasm waned as the day wore on as investors prepared for the long holiday weekend. The Dow closed with a gain of just 0.4%, or about 92 points. That was well off its earlier highs of the day after the government reported that the US economy added 4.8 million jobs in June, bringing the unemployment rate down to 11.1%. “These are impressive numbers that took people by surprise,” said Todd Lowenstein, equity strategy executive of The Private Bank at Union Bank. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq each rose about 0.5%, with the Nasdaq closing at a new all-time high. Big tech stocks Microsoft, Amazon and Netflix were all trading at new records. Investors also bid up several stocks that have benefited from the current work-from-home/shelter-in-place environment. Shares of Clorox, Zoom Video Communications and virtual health company Teladoc all hit new highs Thursday. Digital payments stocks Square and PayPal also reached new record highs. Stocks closed out the abbreviated week of trading with solid gains. The US market is closed Friday in observance of the Independence Day holiday. The Dow was up more than 3% this…

Appointments for coronavirus testing now available online

Riverside County residents interested in getting screened for coronavirus at one of several county-operated testing sites can now make an appointment online. More than 240,000 covid-19 tests have been conducted in Riverside County, and health officials continue to encourage residents – those with and without symptoms — to get screened for the virus. The online scheduling will make it easier to make an appointment. To make an appointment, click www.rivcoph.org/coronavirus/testing. Residents can also call 800-945-6171, seven days a week between the hours of 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. The wait time to make an appointment by phone is shorter between 5 and 10 p.m. “The online appointment system will make it easier and more convenient for everyone to get tested for coronavirus,” said Riverside County Board Chair and Fourth District Supervisor V. Manuel Perez. “It will save time for families making testing appointments, and enable everyone to register for an account to view the result online. An online scheduling system enhances our testing capacity as more testing is conducted throughout Riverside County.” The number of confirmed coronavirus cases has continued to rise recently, along with hospitalizations…

5 things we know about coronavirus in the Inland Empire

You don’t have to be Dr. Anthony Fauci or have a background in epidemiology to know that the Inland Empire, like much of California, is in bad shape with the novel coronavirus. Soaring cases and hospitalizations led Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday, July 1, to order indoor operations at Southern California restaurants, bars, and wineries closed for at least three weeks in an effort to slow the surge ahead of the Fourth of July weekend. Earlier this week, Riverside County’s public health officer ordered bars and breweries to shut unless they serve alcohol with food. In Riverside and San Bernardino counties, new cases and hospitalizations reach new highs day after day — just weeks after officials lauded the reopening of businesses closed since March with Newsom’s statewide stay-at-home order. But just how bad are the numbers? Where is the virus spreading and why are numbers rising? Here are some answers. An ambulance leaves Riverside Community Hospital on Thursday, July 2, 2020. Coronavirus hospitalizations are rising in the Inland Empire. (Photo by Cindy Yamanaka, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG) Jason Clark, an emergency room tech, sanitizes the emergency entrance…

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