The deputy adjutant general of the Utah National Guard is heading to Washington, D.C., to lobby for the state's designation as one of 10 sites where special Guard teams are established to respond to chemical or biological terrorism.
"One of the plans is they'll put one of these teams in every state and territory, but they're going to fund 10 of them on a test basis" for fiscal year 1999, said Brigadier Gen. Phillip O. Peay, the deputy adjutant general. He said the adjutant general, Major Gen. James M. Miller, has written to the National Guard Bureau requesting that Utah receive one of the 10 test teams.On Tuesday, Guard officials met with Gov. Mike Leavitt and briefed him about the idea. Leavitt has written to Defense Secretary William S. Cohen, supporting the state's getting one of the new teams, he said.
Next week Peay will meet with Pentagon officials and members of the Utah congressional delegation.
Utah should be considered, Peay said, in part because the country's biggest single stockpile of chemical weapons is stored here, at Tooele Army Depot.