Governor asks feds to fund Guard deployment; seeks 1,000 more test kits

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Governor Lou Leon Guerrero has asked the federal government for Title 32 authority which would require the federal government to cover the cost of the Guam Guard’s deployment which she ordered last week in the ongoing effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

The Guam Guard was activated under her local ‘state’ authority and GovGuam is now bearing the cost. The Title 32 authority that she has now requested requires the approval of the President or the Secretary of Defense.

The Governor said “what that means is that I can deploy National Guard people to help with security, to help with all the other services that we need,” at the federal government’s expense.

During a conference call with Federal partners this morning the Governor also said that she has asked for them “to please speed up” 1,000 additional tests kits for coronavirus.  She said the test will help better control the outbreak by providing the necessary knowledge and data about the extent of the outbreak.

In addition, the Governor said she has asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency to increase the current match requirement from 75-25 to 100% “so when we request FEMA reimbursement, we get total reimbursement.”

“I’m working very hard to see how we can get as much financial resources and financial help from a federal level,” she said.

The Governor also cited the 40 tests done yesterday which resulted in 3 additional confirmed COVID-19 cases.

“This is the pattern that we’re seeing, it’s a pattern that we’re expecting,” said the Governor, “but I’d like to lessen it to zero a day.”

The Governor thanked all the private businesses, non-profit organizations, the Hotel and Restaurant Association, the church and the business community for their advice and support.

And she appealed to the public “to stay home wash your hands cover your cough and give our manåmko true air kisses.”