March 26, 2020

Congressman Neguse, Colorado Delegation Members Urge President Trump to Expedite Colorado’s Disaster Declaration

Washington D.C.—Today Congressman Joe Neguse led members of the Colorado delegation in sending a letter to President Donald Trump urging him to expedite the Disaster Declaration for the State of Colorado requested by Governor Jared Polis on March 25. 

“Given the unprecedented public health emergency we are experiencing in Colorado, the federal government must immediately bring the full weight of its resources to bear under the Stafford Act to protect Coloradans during this public health crisis,” said Congressman Joe Neguse. “Colorado is already facing severe shortages of Personal Protective Equipment such as respirators, gowns, gloves, and masks. PPE and sanitizing products remain highly requested and are difficult to provide due to continuing shortages. A recent set of supplies issued from the Strategic National Stockpile fulfilled just one day of PPE needs in our state. This outbreak is of such severity and magnitude that effective response and recovery is beyond the capabilities of the state and local governments in Colorado alone. Supplementary federal assistance is urgently required.”

Governor Polis has certified that he has taken appropriate response steps, pursuant to the Stafford Act, through numerous Executive Orders and actions. As examples, the Colorado State Emergency Operations Center was activated on March 2, 2020 to establish, maintain, and share situational awareness. Governor Polis signed an Executive Order on March 11, 2020 proclaiming that a State of Emergency exists for all counties and directed that the Colorado State Emergency Operations Plan be implemented. Governor Polis also ordered into active state service the National Guard, and the Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is currently supporting state agencies, local jurisdictions and tribal governments through the State Emergency Operations Center.

“When compared to other states, Colorado has one of the highest rates of COVID-19 cases per capita. These numbers are anticipated to grow exponentially as the disease spreads rapidly in the coming weeks, with Colorado epidemiologists anticipating the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 to grow into the thousands based on predictive modeling,”reads the letter from Congressman Neguse. “For the sake of our state’s health and economic security, we urge your strong consideration and expedited approval of this request. 

Read the letter here.