Author: Staff   3/18/2021   AP     

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland General Assembly has passed a measure to set aside $577 million over 10 years to settle a federal lawsuit that alleged discrimination and underfunding at the state’s four historically Black colleges and universities.

The House of Delegates gave the bill final approval Wednesday on a 120-14 vote.

The measure now goes to Gov. Larry Hogan, who vetoed a similar bill last year after citing economic difficulties created by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year’s measure would not begin payments until fiscal year 2023 in an adjustment to account for the pandemic.

Most of the measure’s provisions are contingent on a final settlement agreement being reached by the parties by June 1.

Morgan State University President Dr. David Wilson tweeted, “I’m pleased to see that this 15 year-old lawsuit is finally coming to closure. This funding will aid us in planning for Research 1 status ⁦at Morgan State”.