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Interior Department says over 30 staffers have died from COVID-19

The Interior Department on Friday said that more than 30 staff members have died from the coronavirus.

By the numbers: Melissa Schwartz, Interior communications director, said that more than 4,000 staffers have reported contracting the disease.

  • In a video released Wednesday, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said that 34 staffers have died. But Schwartz clarified that the video was taken earlier in the week and that since then, one more person has passed.

What they're saying: "Though many people are vaccinated, our country still faces increased rates of COVID-19 infections and more aggressive variants," Haaland said.

  • Haaland added that the Interior Department will follow the mask guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • "Each state and community faces different threats, so if you are in an area with substantial to high COVID transmission rates, everyone — employees, contractors, and visitors — must wear a mask in all federal buildings no matter your vaccination status."
  • The secretary pledged to continue providing updates on vaccination guidance.

What’s next: The Interior Department is working to establish a process for employees and contractors to confirm their vaccination status.

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Sure Inc. sues rival startup Boost Insurance, alleging it's a copycat

It's every founder's worst nightmare: You take money from a venture capitalist, who then uses what he learns from due diligence and board meetings to create a competitor.

Driving the news: Sure Inc., a startup that provides the infrastructure layer between insurance companies and consumer brands, has sued Boost Insurance, a rival VC-backed startup whose founder and CEO was an early Sure investor and director.

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