Trump is increasing funding for the Nationwide Guard’s coronavirus service in Hawaii and most different states
President Donald Trump has approved funding requests from Hawaii and most other states to continue supporting the National Guard with COVID-19 through March 31.
It is expected that the Hawaii National Guard, among others, will be needed to support the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccinations.
Funding would cover 800 Soldiers and Airmen, and the state can apply for additional funding for up to 1,300 Soldiers and Airmen, Governor David Ige’s office said Thursday.
The governor’s office said funding for National Guard emergency relief efforts related to preventing, mitigating and responding to the threat of the COVID-19 virus costs about $ 8.5 million per month.
Under Trump’s continued funding plan, the Federal Emergency Management Agency will fund 75 percent of the cost, with the state funding 25 percent – or about $ 2 million per month.
President-elect Joe Biden said he would fund the National Guard’s coronavirus work in full – including the 25% state share of the cost, Politico reported. The current financing round ended at the end of the year.
Trump said in a memo Thursday that activated National Guard forces across the country “have been critical of governors in the COVID-19 battle” and that states “will need help tackling trouble spots as they emerge”.
Hawaii is one of the 47 states and territories of Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands that Iges’ office says will receive the extension of funding.
“The President’s approval of this extension of funding will enable the Hawaii National Guard to continue providing much-needed assistance as we respond to this nationwide public health crisis and continue our efforts to protect our communities, save lives and humankind To minimize suffering, “Ige said in a publication.
The four members of the Democratic Congress of Hawaii delegation said in a letter to Trump on Nov. 25 that funding through March 31 is “critical to the public health and safety of Hawaii.”
“We also anticipate that the Hawaii National Guard will be instrumental in promoting a COVID-19 vaccine once it becomes available to the public,” wrote US Sens. Brian Schatz and Mazie K. Hirono and US Representatives Ed Case and Tulsi Gabbard.
The delegation also called on Trump to restore a 100% federal cost share for the National Guard’s coronavirus missions.
The Hawaii National Guard’s citizen soldiers and Airmen conduct missions such as contact tracing, mobile swab team work, health education for vulnerable populations, screening, food distribution and medical care, and more, Iges office said.