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Arizona governor issues stay-at-home order effective Tuesday

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona Doug Ducey has imposed a stay-at-home order to slow the spread of the new coronavirus. But he says grocery stores, pharmacies and other essential services will remain open, and restaurants will continue takeout service. The governor said he took the action Monday after the state's top health director said it was necessary to slow the spread of the COVID-19 disease caused by the virus. The governor said the order takes effect at 5 p.m. Tuesday for all activity that is not essential. State officials also said schools will remain closed for the rest of the school year.


Phoenix officer killed, 2 others wounded; gunman killed

PHOENIX (AP) — Authorities say a 22-year-old man fatally shot a Phoenix police commander and wounded two other officers as they tried to remove him from a home after his roommates complained he was acting erratically. Cmdr. Greg Carnicle and the two other officers were shot Sunday as they walked up stairs inside the house after Jacob Emry Mcilveen refused to leave. Mcilveen remained in the home after the injured officers were removed. He eventually walked out of the home armed and was killed by police. The two wounded officers are expected to survive. Carnicle was set to retire in the fall.


University of Arizona to let med students graduate early

PHOENIX (AP) — University of Arizona medical students who want to join the front lines of the fight against the coronavirus pandemic can ask to graduate early. The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix announced it is offering eligible fourth-year students the chance to graduate before mid-May. Each student's request will have to be reviewed by a committee next week. But, students could potentially be at work in a clinical setting by mid-April. College Dean Guy Reed says these are “extraordinary times” and the school is “in admiration of our students who wish to pursue this option.” This year's graduating class is made up of around 90 students.


Groups: More time needed to weigh New Mexico drilling plan

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Archaeologists, historians and environmentalists are joining New Mexico's congressional delegation and a coalition of Native American tribes in asking federal land managers to grant more time for the public to comment on a contested plan that will guide oil and gas development near Chaco Culture National Historical Park. They say the federal government should wait until the coronavirus outbreak subsides to ensure the public has an adequate opportunity to participate. Despite existing protections within its boundaries, the World Heritage site has been at the center of a decades-long fight over drilling in northwestern New Mexico.


Plans for Navajo Medicaid entity stall in leadership dispute

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Plans for a Navajo Nation entity to manage Medicaid on parts of the reservation are up in the air over disagreements among tribal leaders. A tribal corporation has been touting a plan that would incorporate traditional healing, food boxes and customer service in the Navajo language. But it hit another snag last week when tribal President Jonathan Nez vetoed a resolution that he says unconscionably tried to capitalize on the spread of the coronavirus. Nez says the resolution wasn't an emergency as written and the corporation wasn't set up to manage health care. Tribal lawmakers had approved the corporation's efforts to administer Medicaid on the New Mexico portion of the reservation.


Grandparenting goes digital as virus keeps older adults home

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — For grandparents all over the world, being protected from the coronavirus pandemic has meant a piercing distance from their loved ones. Children don’t seem to be getting seriously ill as often, but likely spread the virus. Older adults are at higher risk of complications from the coronavirus. It's a jolting change for grandparents who are also caregivers. Many use calls and video-chats to stay in touch with kids who they used to see frequently. Grandparents are also taking up new hobbies, reconnecting with the past or finding ways to spend time with neighbors at a distance.


Arizona governor signs stripped-down $11.8 billion budget

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has signed a stripped-down emergency state budget that contains $50 million in spending to help tenants, homeowners and small businesses weather the coronavirus crisis. The $11.8 billion spending plan for the budget year that begins July 1 essentially contains no other new spending beyond required inflation adjustments and raises for teachers. It passed the state Senate last week and the House on Monday. The $50 million of virus-related funding includes money to prevent evictions and foreclosures, provide homeless services, assist small businesses and pay for food bank operations. It also includes longer welfare payments and a waiver from work requirements.


Tribes say persistent efforts pay off in massive stimulus

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Tribes say their persistent efforts to be included in a massive stimulus bill to respond to the new coronavirus have paid off. Tribes have been lobbying Congress to help address shortfalls in an already underfunded health care system that serves Native Americans. They secured $10 billion in the bill that President Donald Trump signed Friday. Most of it is set aside as a relief fund that will be distributed based on need. More than $1 billion will go to the federal agency that provides primary health care for more than 2 million Native Americans. The Navajo Nation in the U.S. Southwest has been hardest hit by the virus with more than 90 confirmed cases.