Let’s jump right into the news, some of which merits some discussion:
• Yesterday, we mentioned that Riverside County COVID-19 hospitalizations had gone up almost 6 percent from Friday (184) to Tuesday (195). This fact is important for all sorts of reasons, one of which is the fact that “stable hospitalizations of COVID individuals on a 7-day average of daily percent change of less than 5 percent,” whatever that means, is one of the new criteria for counties to move further into Stage 2 of the reopening process.
Well, according to today’s numbers, 189 people are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 in the county—a drop of six yesterday. This means the county may meet this criterion. Although, seriously, I don’t know what “stable hospitalizations of COVID individuals on a 7-day average of daily percent change of less than 5 percent” means. Do you? Anyone?
Meanwhile, the county government is still waiting to hear from the governor office to see if the state will accept their attestation, sent Friday, that Riverside County is supposedly ready to move further into Stage 2 (which means retail stores and restaurants can have customers inside of them). No word on that yet. However …
• The state has, as of this writing, given 32 counties the go-ahead to move further into Stage 2—including the first Southern California county, Ventura County.
• Tulare County, which had not get gotten the go-ahead, has decided to skip the second part of Stage 2 and barrel into Stage 3—something the state called “hasty and careless.”
• Here in the valley, the Agua Caliente casino properties in Rancho Mirage and Palm Springs have announced they’ll be open for business come Friday. Read the details here.
• While most Southern California casinos obviously didn’t heed Gov. Newsom’s plea to hold off on reopening, the Riverside Press-Enterprise is reporting that one has: San Diego County’s Casino Pauma will remain closed for now.
• Among all of the reopening news, a sobering note: According to the World Health Organization, more than 100,000 cases of COVID-19 were reported to the agency in the last day—the most since the pandemic began.
• An update: Hospitals in Imperial County (our neighbor to the southeast) are again taking COVID-19 patients, after being overwhelmed yesterday. Inewsource explains what happened.
• Here are more details on the Memorial Day weekend celebration downtown Palm Springs retailers are having—in a curbside-pickup, responsible manner, of course.
• A new Stanford study makes it clear that, no, you probably didn’t have the coronavirus back in the fall.
• From the Independent: The Coachella Valley Water District has obtained $3.3 million in state funds to extend water service to east valley areas that badly need it. While the funding seems secure for now … nothing is a sure thing in this COVID-19 world.
• Meanwhile, in Florida, it appears the government may be trying to fudge the coronavirus numbers, which is a very bad thing. A similar but different thing is happening in Georgia, too.
• As testing becomes more wildly available … should everyone consider getting tested? A Los Angeles Times writer goes through the process—and talks to the experts.
• AAP—Food Samaritans lost its huge Evening Under the Stars fundraiser due to the shutdown—but the excellent nonprofit organization is holding a great online auction June 1-7. Check out the goods, or just contribute.
• Prejudice and fear regarding people who have recovered from COVID-19 are real things. The New York Times explains.
• What is the pandemic like for people with multiple partners living in separate homes? Agence France-Press, via Yahoo! News, talks to some Muslim men in Kuwait dealing with this situation.
• Gosh darn it, now there’s a garlic shortage? Sigh.
• Shakespeare’s Globe theater is another possible casualty of the pandemic.
That’s today’s news. Buy our amazing coloring book! Please consider supporting local journalism, if you can afford to do so, by becoming a Supporter of the Independent. We’ll return tomorrow.