Monday, August 3rd - Tuesday, August 4th, 2020
Editor's note: I'm triaging tonight's newsletter down to just the local sections due to time constraints--work's been non-stop since I got back from my vacation on Monday.
Image from The Seattle Times -- click to open it in a standalone window
King County
15,779 confirmed cases (+145), 657 deaths (+1)
King County Key Indicators (last updated 7/29 at 2:46 pm)

As of last night at 11:59 pm
59,379 confirmed cases (+664), 1,619 deaths (+19)
Total tests conducted: 1,009,486

4,745,694 confirmed cases (+51,568), 148,829 deaths (+1,176)
Total tests conducted: 58,239,438 (+695,586)

The world
18,142,718 confirmed cases (+219,862), 691,013 deaths (+4,278)
Local COVID-19 News
The head of the state's Employment Security Department disclosed for the first time the full extent of the state's losses to a Nigerian fraud ring in May ($576 million, $340 million of which was ultimately recovered), and announced that the state had cleared its backlog of more than 81,000 applicants who had applied for unemployment between March 8th and June 18th but hadn't received any unemployment payments yet...although she acknowledged that 30,152 people who have had their benefits suspended are still waiting for their cases to be resolved. [Seattle Times]

Mayor Durkan vetoed the City Council's plan to spend $86 million from the City's reserve funds to provide immediate coronavirus relief to Seattle residents and small businesses, with the funds to be paid back next year with the revenues from the newly passed JumpStart Seattle high-earners payroll tax. Given that the spending plan passed unanimously, though, the City Council is expected to override Durkan's veto. [Seattle Times]

Between July 13th and July 27th, King County had a positive test rate of 3.9%, while Seattle's positive test rate was just 2%--but there were parts of South King County that had positive test rates as high as 13.1%. [Seattle Times]

And the state issued a $4,200 fine against a flower shop in Maltby for "not requiring masks or face coverings, not practicing social distancing and not conducting employee temperature checks" for an extended period of time after multiple visits from authorities. [KING 5]
Local Protest News
Ahead of a scheduled vote tomorrow (Wednesday) to move the re-balanced 2020 budget out of committee and set it up for a formal vote next Monday, members of the City Council who had previously said that they supported reducing SPD's 2021 budget by 50% as well as cutting 50% from the department's remaining 2020 budget instead proposed a much smaller package of cuts that they say represents a "down payment" on more sweeping changes to the department's funding in the 2021 budget. [Seattle Times, Crosscut]

A nightly protest called the Seattle Evening March held protests outside the homes of City Councilmembers Lisa Herbold, Lorena González, and Teresa Mosqueda and SPD Chief Carmen Best, continuing a recent trend of visiting the homes of public officials to pressure them to defund SPD. Herbold, González, and Mosqueda sat down and talked with the protesters, who expressed their frustration that the councilmembers were backing off of their earlier pledge; Chief Best's neighbors in Snohomish County blocked off the street and drew guns to prevent them from approaching, and Best wrote an open letter to the City Council the next day encouraging them to call on the protesters to stop visiting public officials' homes. [Seattle Times]

And a group of protesters are suing the City over what they say is a "de facto protest tax" due to the necessity of protesters purchasing protective gear to protect themselves from police violence in order to be able to exercise their right to peaceful free speech. [KUOW, MyNorthwest]
Ending on a high note
A YouTuber named Uncle Rob filmed the definitive guide to how effective masks are at preventing the spread of droplets from coughs...and, spoiler alert, it involves a butane torch and lots of flames
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Copyright © 2020 Sol Villarreal, All rights reserved.

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