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Nevada National Guard to continue aiding COVID-19 response

CARSON CITY, NV – Nevada National Guard personnel, activated in April to help with the state’s COVID-19 response through the end of this year, will remain on duty through March under an extension approved Thursday by President Donald Trump.

The extension covers Guard deployments in nearly all states. As before, the state will pay 25 percent of the cost and the federal government 75 percent. The state Guard remains under Gov. Steve Sisolak’s control, his office said in announcement.

The governor said he was “grateful” that the president “has recognized the continued need for states to receive financial assistance for the vital role the men and women of the Nevada National Guard provide.”

This year’s activation has become the state Guard’s largest and longest deployment. Its personnel have set up four community-based COVID sample collection sites and staffed 24 mobile sample collection teams serving rural Nevada.

Ten of the mobile teams also traveled to Native American communities throughout the state, according to the governor’s office.

Guard members also staff testing, contact tracing, laboratory and logistical support operations, help with food distribution, work in the state emergency operations center and maintain the state’s strategic stockpile of equipment, such as personal protective equipment and medical supplies.

Sisolak said he would keep lobbying for more federal money to help the state, saying that Nevada “has experienced some of the most severe economic impacts in the country as a result of this pandemic and additional federal support is necessary for us to recover.”

President-elect Joe Biden promised last month to authorize an extension of funding for Guard deployments after he is sworn into office Jan. 20.

Contact Capital Bureau reporter Bill Dentzer at bdentzer@reviewjournal.com. Follow @DentzerNews on Twitter.

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