Governor Ned Lamont has asked President Donald Trump for an extension of the authorization allowing for COVID-19 support from the Connecticut National Guard through June 31, 2021, the governor's office announced Monday morning.
The Guard initially was tasked to help in the state's coronavirus response efforts on April 2, but that initial authorization ended September 30, with a new one in place for October 1 through December 31.
“Between constructing mobile field hospitals, delivering PPE, supporting the needs of nursing homes, and assisting the operations of testing sites, the Connecticut National Guard has been a critical component of our state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Lamont said in a statement. “And it must also be noted that the Guard’s support goes beyond assistance to state government – this authorization means it can provide assistance to our towns, cities, and health care providers to help protect our communities. I thank the Guard for its commitment to the citizens of Connecticut and the impact they’ve made here.”
As part of the governor's request, he asked for the federal government to restore to 100 percent the federal cost share for the state. Under the current authorization, that share is down to 75 percent, meaning the state is responsible for 25 percent, which is estimated at $2.5 million, according to Lamont's office.
The Connecticut National Guard help set up mobile field hospitals across the state during the initial wave of the virus and delivered personal protective equipment, among other assistance the guardsmen provided.