FEMA Releases Information Regarding National Guard Title 32 Status

Release Date Release Number
Release Date:
March 29, 2020

WASHINGTON -- The response to COVID-19 is a highly coordinated effort between States, Territories, and the Federal government. As States and Territories scale their response to meet the threat, the Federal government will scale its support of these efforts by increasing the level of shared resources. To effectively contain and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 it is imperative that real-time information and data, including demand on hospital beds and supply chain issues, be collected and shared.  With this rapidly evolving situation, the Federal government will continue closely monitoring needs and re-evaluating Federal support. 

On March 22, President Trump directed the Secretary of Defense to permit full federal reimbursement, by FEMA, for some states for use of their National Guard forces.

To date, President Trump has approved this authority to the following: California, Florida, Guam, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico and Washington. The President’s action provides governors continued command of their National Guard forces, while being federally funded under Title 32, enabling these states to use the additional resources to meet the missions necessary in the COVID-19 response.

Since then, the Administration has received requests from additional states seeking approval of federal support for use of their National Guard personnel in a Title 32 duty status.

Title 32 requests from states and territories will be considered for approval by the President based on the following criteria:

  • A state or territory must have been approved for a Major Disaster declaration for the COVID-19 response or have submitted a Major Disaster Declaration request to FEMA for review.
  • The state or territory must have activated the lesser of 500 individuals or 2 percent of National Guard personnel in the State or Territory in response to COVID-19.
  • A specific request for the reimbursement through Title 32 status must be submitted to the FEMA Administrator via the FEMA Regional Administrator, and it should identify specific emergency support functions the National Guard will carry out for COVID-19 support in accordance with the Stafford Act.
  • For those states and territories that are approved under these criteria, FEMA will execute a fully reimbursable mission assignment to the Department of Defense, including reimbursement for pay and allowances of National Guard personnel serving in a Title 32 duty status in fulfillment of the FEMA mission assignment.

Pursuant to this approval, the federal government will fund 100% of the cost share for 30 days from the date of the authorizing Presidential Memorandum. The Administration will continue to work with states approved for 100% cost share to assess whether an extension of this level of support is needed.  

The use of federal funding for Title 32 will not federalize command of the activated National Guard personnel. Each state’s National Guard is still under the authority of the Governor and is working in concert with the Department of Defense.



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