DENVER – U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner has self-quarantined after he came into contact with a constituent who visited him in Washington, D.C. who later tested positive for COVID-19, though he so far has no symptoms, he said Tuesday afternoon.
Gardner, the Republican from Yuma, said the Tri-County Health Department notified him Tuesday that the contact came when the person visited his Washington office earlier this month.
“While I am not showing any symptoms at this time, I have made the decision to self-quarantine out of an abundance of caution with an effective date of March 11th at the recommendation of the Tri-County Health Department,” Gardner said in a statement. “The health and safety of Coloradans and Americans across the nation is my top priority, and I will continue working to make sure Congress provides the resources needed to help combat the spread of COVID-19.”
Colorado Congressman Jason Crow will also self-quarantine, saying he also came into contact with a constituent on March 11 who later tested positive for COVID-19. The congressman released the following statement:
“We have a personal responsibility as citizens to do everything we can to contain the spread of coronavirus. Even though I have no symptoms, we have to treat any possible exposure with the utmost caution and for that reason, I will self-quarantine. This is a pandemic and it’s incumbent upon every American to do their part. While at home, I look forward to working full steam ahead to provide the federal resources our community needs to address this crisis.”
Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., said he came in contact with a person positive for COVID-19 as well. A spokesperson said they couldn’t say whether it was the same constituent as others, but Bennet was told by Tri-County Health of the possible exposure following an interaction – similar to Gardner’s story.
“Michael has consulted with the Attending Physician of the U.S. Congress who said that self-quarantining was not necessary and advised him to monitor his health, isolate in his home and office, and continue to practice social distancing and other protective measures. Michael is following the advice of medical professionals and encourages everyone to do the same,” spokesperson Courtney Gidner said.
Gardner and the full Colorado congressional delegation – save for Rep. Ken Buck, who has on multiple occasions in the past two weeks voted against COVID-19 coronavirus response funding measures – sent a letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency Tuesday demanding clear reimbursement guidelines to the state of Colorado and local and tribal governments.
“Many counties across Colorado have expressed frustration over what they perceive as a lack of clear guidance as to what actions are reimbursable under this national emergency declaration,” the delegation wrote. “While FEMA and other agencies have provided a few examples of what can be reimbursed – such as costs associated with activating State Emergency Operations Centers and the state National Guards – they have not provided specific examples for the local levels or clear guidelines on how to access these funds.”
“COVID-19 has become a global pandemic and a national crisis. It is critical that all levels of government are equipped with the information and resources needed to combat this novel coronavirus. For this reason, we are requesting that FEMA reach out to local governments (i.e., counties and municipalities) and provide them with the necessary information to make them aware of all of the resources and assistance available to them during this emergency,” the delegation added.
Click here for the latest updates on coronavirus in Colorado.