Rabid Bats Confirmed in SB County

Jul 30, 2020
Northern Long-eared Bat
National Park Service/United States Fish and Wildlife Service

On Thursday it was confirmed that rabid bats in San Bernardino County including four within the past two weeks had been identified in in the communities of Rancho Cucamonga, Fontana and Apple Valley. Confirmation is determined based on testing that's done at the public health lab. San Bernardino County Public Health is urging the public to protect themselves and their pets from interactions with unfamiliar, stray or wild animals.

The coming trend of automation has been looming over the logistics industry for a while, especially in places likes the Inland Empire, as more and more jobs are becoming automated. University of Redlands economist Johannes Moenius says COVID-19 could accelerate that trend, transforming the job market in the Inland Empire quicker than expected. 

Activists Rally Outside Adelanto ICE Processing Center

May 29, 2020
Benjamin Purper / KVCR

Protesters rallied outside the Adelanto ICE Processing Center yesterday to denounce what they say are poor conditions for immigrants detained in the center. ICE denies this and says it’s taking the necessary steps to combat COVID-19 in the facility. 

Protesters gathered in front of the ICE Processing Center in Adelanto to denounce the conditions inside the facility, which they say are substandard.

The FDA has given emergency authorization to a Fontana-based company to produce and manufacture “Patient Isolation Transportation Units” for use with COVID-19 patients. 

The Patient Isolation Transportation Unit, or PITU, is an enclosure that makes it safer to work with patients with highly contagious diseases.

It’s what’s called a negative pressure isolation enclosure.

The California Employment Development Department today released the state’s unemployment rates for last month, including those of San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. 

The state’s unemployment rate was at a record 15.5 percent in April as the state’s employers lost more than 2 million non-farm payroll jobs.

San Bernardino County’s unemployment rate jumped to 13.4 percent, and Riverside’s went up to 15.3 percent.

The combined unemployment rate for Riverside and San Bernardino counties in April was 14.4%, up from only 5.2% in March.

KVCR has been interviewing local elected officials about the coronavirus. Now, we have an interview with 5th District Supervisor for Riverside County, Jeff Hewitt. Supervisor Hewitt discusses his reasoning for voting to rescind most of the coronavirus restrictions put in place by Riverside County Health Officer Cameron Kaiser. 

Editor's note: The CDC in its guidelines recommends wearing face masks in public. Neighboring Los Angeles County requires masks in public, but it is no longer mandated in Riverside or San Bernardino Counties.

May is Mental Health Month, and we have a series of stories about mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic. Now we have an interview with Dr. David Puder of Loma Linda University Health, who is worried about a potential increase in depression and suicide as a result of the pandemic and its economic fallout. As a warning, this story does talk extensively about suicide. Here’s KVCR’s Benjamin Purper in conversation with Dr. Puder.

You can hear more of Dr. Puder’s work on the Psychiatry & Psychotherapy Podcast.


Public comments on budget cuts to a centuries old public institution stretched a Redland’s City Council meeting to nearly eight hours. The council met to discuss a proposed budget to handle revenue losses from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Facing a fifteen point seven-million-dollar shortfall for next year’s budget, Mayor Paul Foster led a virtual city council meeting on Tuesday morning. Broadcast online, with city council members calling in remotely, the tone was somber.

On Friday, the Riverside County Board of Supervisors rescinded all but one of their own public health officer’s coronavirus orders, effectively loosening restrictions on mandates such as the requirement to wear face masks in public and practice social distancing. KVCR’s Benjamin Purper spoke with Riverside City Councilmember and small business owner Ronaldo Fierro about the Board’s decision and what it means for the city of Riverside. 

Before last week’s vote, the Riverside City Council voted to send a letter to the Board asking them to delay it.

Monday through Thursday at lunchtime, Empire KVCR News has your daily news rundown. Stories highlighted today include:

The city of Fontana is out $6.8 million in revenue thanks to the coronavirus. It’s also the city with the second-most coronavirus cases in San Bernardino County, as of Tuesday. KVCR’s Benjamin Purper spoke with the mayor of Fontana, Acquanetta Warren, about the revenue loss and what it means for the city.

Coronavirus Interview: Congressman Pete Aguilar

May 1, 2020

As part of our series of interviews with local elected officials about the coronavirus, we now have a conversation with Congressman Pete Aguilar, whose district includes San Bernardino and Redlands among other San Bernardino County cities. Aguilar discusses a recent town hall he held with Small Business Administration experts, what's next for legislative coronavirus relief, and the state of testing for COVID-19 in the Inland Empire. 

Now we have a conversation with Sarah McKinnon, Vice President of Seasons Hospice & Palliative Care, about how hospice care workers are grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Seasons Hospice & Palliative Care has an office in San Bernardino.

Andrew Caravella / KVCR News

The Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County held a drive-thru food distribution event at San Bernardino Valley College today. KVCR’s Andrew Caravella interviewed the CEO of the organization, Patricia Nickols-Butler.

More information is available at

Lillian Vasquez has a conversation with John Chapman, Interim President and CEO of San Antonio Regional Hospital, about the equipment used by front-line medical staff designed to keep themselves and their patients safe during the coronavirus pandemic. Then KVCR’s Rick Dulock speaks with John Longville, San Bernardino Community College District Trustee, about how they are helping local health care providers to combat the spread of the virus.

To learn more about the San Antonio Regional Hospital in Upland, visit

Monday through Thursday at lunchtime, Empire KVCR News has your daily news rundown. Stories highlighted today include:

Now we continue our series of talking to local elected officials about the coronavirus through an interview with Curt Hagman, Fourth District Supervisor of San Bernardino County and Chairman of the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors. 

You can hear the full interview on an upcoming segment of Inland Edition. 

The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has named a new chairman, Ken Ramirez. KVCR’s Benjamin Purper spoke with Ramirez about the tribe and what it’s doing during this time of pandemic.

Monday through Thursday at lunchtime, Empire KVCR News has your daily news rundown. Stories highlighted today include:

  1. Public health officials release new modeling indicating that preventative measures appear to be slowing down the spread of the virus.
  2. The state is preparing for the possibility of a wildfire that would prompt evacuees during the pandemic.
  3. Springtime means work for cattle ranchers, but it also means another way the coronavirus could spread.

Redlands Community Hospital, American Cancer Society

Lillian speaks with Randy Bevilacqua, Vice President of Business Development and Marketing at Redlands Community Hospital. He shares how the hospital has been preparing for an influx of Covid-19 patients. Also on the show is Kristen Strauch from the local branch of the American Cancer Society. She discusses their hotline and how they’ve been advising cancer patients in these challenging times.

For more information about Redlands Community Hospital, visit

Tad Worku

Musician and trauma nurse Tad Worku's latest release, "Love Is All," seeks to offer some hope amid a global pandemic.

"It feels like the entire world has been thrown into an emergency department," says Tad Worku, a musician-turned-E.R.-nurse whose day job at the Loma Linda University Health emergency room has gotten tangled up with his music in this time of pandemic.

Worku is the son of Ethiopian immigrants to the United States. He got his start in music playing trumpet, but quickly moved on to guitar and piano.

Children's Fund, UCR

Lillian Vasquez speaks with Dr. Cid Pinedo, President and CEO of the Children’s Fund. He shares what his non-profit is doing for families in the community during this pandemic. Also on the show, KVCR’s Benjamin Purper has a conversation with Karthick Ramakrishnan, Professor of Political Science and Associate Dean of UC Riverside’s School of Public Policy. He's also the Director of UCR's Center for Social Innovation. They discuss local data and tracking related to the pandemic and how organizations and philanthropists are collaborating to help.

The University of California, Riverside’s Center for Social Innovation has released new resources to help track and fight COVID-19, as well as a new report on the state of nonprofits in the Inland Empire. 

Longtime Inland Empire journalist and KVCR contributor Cassie MacDuff and KVCR's Benjamin Purper review some of the big Inland Empire news stories from the past week, including:

Monday through Thursday at lunchtime, Empire KVCR News has your daily news rundown. Stories highlighted today include:

Coronavirus Interview: Assemblywoman Eloise Reyes

Apr 9, 2020

During this time of crisis, KVCR has been interviewing local elected officials about the coronavirus. We continue that series now through an interview with Assemblywoman Eloise Reyes, who represents San Bernardino, Fontana, Colton, and other Inland Empire cities. 

SB County Face Covering Clarification

Apr 8, 2020
Social Media Team
Andrew Caravella / KVCR News

On Wednesday, the County of San Bernardino gave clarification on Tuesday's order for mandatory face coverings effective April 8th, 2020. 

"We recognize the need to act quickly to slow the spread of COVID-19 throughout San Bernardino County," said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. Additionally, San Bernardino County District 1 Supervisor Robert Lovingood spoke to KVCR over the phone, ensuring that there will not be any overreach and the goal is to keep as many people safe from harm. 

Lillian Vasquez speaks with Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor of California Community Colleges. He talks about how the community colleges are transitioning during the pandemic. Also on the show is Dr. Stephanie Houston, Assistant Superintendent of Innovation and Engagement with San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools. She shares how resources from the county are ready to support students with more than At-home lessons.

For more information about the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools, visit

Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton will hold drive-through coronavirus testing beginning April 9. 

COVID-19 testing will be available for the public by appointment only.

The testing will be conducted at the outpatient building entrance on the Arrowhead Regional Medical Center campus.

The testing will occur on Thursday and Friday of this week as well as Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of next week, from 8a.m. to 5p.m.

In a press release, ARMC said additional testing date will be announced at a later date.

Monday through Thursday at lunchtime, Empire KVCR News has your daily news rundown. Stories highlighted today include:

  1. California is being asked to delay the trout and salmon fishing seasons to limit the spread of coronavirus.
  2. California’s courts have suspended eviction proceedings in the state until 90 days after the state of emergency has lifted.
  3. The number of Californians hospitalized for coronavirus started to level off in recent days, showing that social distancing appears to be working.