5 Things to Know: Thursday, December 3

Welcome to 5 Things to Know – a daily rundown of things you might want to be aware of if you live in, visit, or just like being aware about what’s going on in Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley. As always, thank you for your continued support of Cactus Hugs.

1) The Coronavirus

Riverside County reported 901 new cases and 13 new reported deaths since Wednesday. There have been 1,457 reported deaths from coronavirus this year in Riverside County. The county reported 649 COVID-19 patients in county hospitals.  That’s more than at any other point in the pandemic and it has been rising steadily over the last couple of weeks.

Here is the latest on what’s going on in the desert:


Hope is on the way.  It’s not here yet and things are going from bad to worse.  Please, be safe. Wear a mask.  Be careful.  Be smart.

2) Banning man dead in freeway crash near Cabazon

A 56-year-old Banning man was killed after his SUV overturned after a tire blowout on the 10 freeway near Cabazon.  David Foxworth was pronounced dead at the scene.  His’s wife and children were injured in the crash, which happened about 5 pm near Main Street.

Officer Matt Napier said Foxworth was at the wheel of a Chevrolet Suburban that had just passed Haugen-Lehmann Way when one of the SUV’s tires abruptly went flat.

3) Hey remember that whole thing with the developers and the former mayor?

The legal process for ex-Palm Springs Mayor Steve Pougnet and two Coachella Valley developers accused of buying his vote has been a very, very long one – but, there’s an actual hearing scheduled for Friday in Indio.

Pougnet and developers Richard Meaney and John Wessman were indicted on Aug. 15, 2019, after the case was presented to a grand jury by the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.

Attorneys for the defendants are expected to argue that the felony charges against their clients should be dismissed.

4) Airport Fire grows to 750 acres

A fire that erupted near the Corona Municipal Airport has grown to 750 acres.  The Airport Fire started on Tuesday and has spread rapidly due to strong winds.  The flames have prompted the closure of State Route 71 in both directions between the 91 Freeway and Highway 83.

5) Rancho Mirage has upped the fees to operate a short-term rental

Rancho Mirage will begin charging $1,700 per year for a short-term rental permit fee after concluding the paltry $399 per year wasn’t covering the costs of dealing with all the issues associated with the units for the city.  The move is expected to increase revenue from STR permits to $340,043 a year, up from $79,800.

Stay safe.  Stay smart.  Practice Social Distancing.  Wear a mask.