According to the national COVID-19 lawsuit case tracker at law firm Hunton Andrews Kurth, 7,734 COVID-related lawsuits were filed in the United States in 2020 and 4,841 in 2021.
In Idaho, there were 26 COVID-related lawsuits in 2020, of which three were on the basis of civil rights being violated. In 2021, through Oct. 22, there were 29 COVID-related lawsuits. Here in 2021, 11 of those suits have been on the basis of civil rights violations.
In total, there have been of 55 lawsuits on any grounds related to the pandemic since COVID-19 arrived in Idaho in March 2020. Frankly, as far as litigation goes, this number of cases is trivial. There are approximately 40 million civil lawsuits filed in the United States every year, of which 95% are filed in state courts. Over a half a million criminal and civil suits are filed in Idaho annually, according to the courts in Ada County.
In the coastal California town of Gorda, gasoline prices hit a record $7.59 per gallon on Oct. 21, according to KABC in Los Angeles. According to gasbuddy.com, gasoline in the People’s Republic of Berkeley was $4.47 per gallon and averaged $3.67 per gallon in the Treasure Valley, $3.25 in Lewiston, $3.29 in Coeur d’Alene and $3.53 in Idaho Falls on Oct. 22.
When the East Idaho News reported on Oct. 18 the announcement that the Montana-headquartered steak chain Rib & Chop House was coming to Idaho Falls, the best part of the article were the comments. In reaction to the chain serving beef and shrimp, one commenter remarked: “Montana grows shrimp?”
A second commenter replied: “Yep. According to Sir David Attenborough here’s what to look for: The Montana shrimp is a territorial little scamp. Its most distinct features are its oversized truck, undersized pants, small feet and sunglasses that are worn when least practical. Also, the Montana shrimp likes pronounce the word bag with a rather peculiar “begg” sound. Much like its cousin, the Texas shrimp, the Montana shrimp thinks it is bigger and better than you in every way possible.”
The Idaho Department of Labor issued a statement on Oct. 22 about the state’s continuing low 2.9% unemployment rate: “Idaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 2.9% in September, unchanged from August. The state’s labor force grew by 1,270 (0.1%) people to 906,191. This is the second largest over-the-month increase this year. Despite this increase, the labor force participation rate decreased by 0.1 percentage points to 62.4%. Total employment grew to 880,283, up 0.2% (1,917), while total unemployment dropped 2.4% (-647) to 25,908.”