Money for N.C. “Freedom Park” signed into law by Cooper

North Carolina

FILE – In this Wednesday, June 24, 2020, file photo, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper arrives for a news briefing on the coronavirus at the Emergency Operations Center in Raleigh, N.C. With reported coronavirus cases rising rapidly in many states, governors are getting lots of advice on how to respond. Cooper announced a statewide mask rule and three-week pause on further reopenings, moves that were supported by a nurses association. But Cooper has faced pushback from Republican lawmakers and small businesses that are still shuttered, including bars, gyms and bowling alleys, which have tried to overturn the governor’s orders through legal action or legislation. (Robert Willett/The News & Observer via AP, File)

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Another two dozen bills were signed into law by Gov. Roy Cooper, including one with money to help build a long-planned park to honor the contributions of African Americans in North Carolina.

The $1.5 million in matching funds for a “North Carolina Freedom Park” in downtown Raleigh was included in a measure that allocated money for building repair and renovations for state agencies and the University of North Carolina system.

Another measure, signed on Wednesday along with the other bills, distributes hundreds of millions of dollars more from North Carolina’s $3.5 billion shares of federal coronavirus relief funds. A law finalized in May already had distributed $1.6 billion.

In a statement, Cooper highlighted an additional $7 million allocated in the new law for personal protective equipment for the public schools but said “we need to work together to do more.”

Other bills he signed locates funds to teach anticipated student enrollment increases at UNC system schools this fall; provides UNC schools, private colleges and community colleges immunity from lawsuits seeking financial damages on tuition and fees for the spring semester; and builds a new effort to renovate aging local water and wastewater treatment systems.

Cooper has 15 bills left on his desk from the General Assembly before it went home last week.

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