Lamont asks Trump to extend National Guard virus support

Published on Monday, 16 November 2020 13:21
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HARTFORD - Gov. Ned Lamont has requested that the National Guard be allowed to continue supporting the state's coronavirus response efforts through the middle of next year.

The governor, in a letter to President Donald Trump, also requested that the federal government pick up 100% of the cost of using those troops.

The current authorization is scheduled to expire on Dec. 31.

More than 1,000 members of the Guard have been deployed in Connecticut during the pandemic, performing tasks such as setting up field hospitals, distributing personal protective equipment, assisting in nursing home inspections and helping to run COVID-19 testing sites.

Between April 2 and Sept. 30, the federal government picked up the entire cost of those deployments Since Oct. 1, the state has been responsible for 25% of the cost.

The governor's office said Monday that change is estimated to cost the state $2.5 million during the current authorization.

Lamont and members of his executive staff, including chief of staff Paul Mounds and chief operating officer Josh Geballe, have been in quarantine since Friday after Lamont's communications director tested positive for the coronavirus.

That spokesman, Max Reiss, said he's not sure how he contracted the virus.

Mounds said Saturday that the quarantine is not expected to impact the work of the staff, much of which has been done remotely during the pandemic.

U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, who were at a news conference Friday that was attended by Reiss and the governor, also have been isolating themselves while awaiting results of coronavirus tests.

Posted in The Bristol Press, General News on Monday, 16 November 2020 13:21. Updated: Monday, 16 November 2020 13:24.