April 2, 2020
U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS—President Donald J. Trump on Tuesday, granted a Major Disaster Declaration for the Territory, triggering the release of federal funds to mitigate the health and economic devastation brought about by the COVID-19 outbreak.
The declaration designates federal assistance to be used for emergency aid related to health care efforts of Coronavirus and peripheral issues arising from the pandemic. The federal assistance will be administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and will provide 75 percent federal funding for all islands in the Territory.
Governor Albert Bryan Jr. also has requested federal aid for persons and households affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, and that request for individual assistance currently is under review by the federal government.
“While this is a welcome relief and will assist our efforts to contain the spread of the virus, this declaration is not as expansive as we have hoped,” Governor Bryan said. “The measures required to effectively respond to the health crisis have created an economic crisis across the nation and in our territory and we are hoping for additional support for our dislocated workers, small business owners, farmers, and fishermen.”
Among the specified uses for the public assistance that have been approved are:
Additional designations may be made at a later date if requested by the territory and warranted by the results of further assessments.