President Trump has extended the use of Louisiana National Guard troops under Title 32 for response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor John Bel Edwards announced Thursday.
The extension allows Louisiana to continue its testing efforts and its planning for the wide distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine next year, Gov. Edwards explained. Federal funds will cover 75 percent of the associated costs.
Gov. Edwards spoke to Vice President Mike Pence earlier this week, he said, about the "great need the states were facing." National Guard troops have administered more than 287,000 COVID tests to Louisiana residents since being activated in response to the pandemic earlier this year.
The governor's statement reads in full:
I am deeply appreciative of President Donald Trump's action to extend the use of National Guard troops under Title 32 during this unprecedented COVID-19 crisis. I spoke with Vice President Mike Pence on Monday about this great need the states were facing and he worked quickly to get the approval granted. This Title 32 extension allows Louisiana to continue its robust testing efforts and its planning for the wide distribution of the COVID vaccine next year. So far, members of Louisiana's National Guard have administered more than 287,000 COVID tests, in addition to the critical roles they played in responding to Louisiana's historic and devastating hurricane season. Without these hardworking men and women, our state would be severely limited in its ability to test for COVID and I appreciate their service and commitment to protecting the people of our state.
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