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Judge tosses Arizona suit over limits on virus relief funds

(KYMA, KECY/ AP News) - A judge has dismissed Governor Doug Ducey’s lawsuit challenging the Biden Administration’s demands that the state stop sending millions in federal Covid-19 relief money to schools that don’t have mask requirements or that close due to Covid-19 outbreaks.

The state filed the lawsuit earlier this year after the U.S. Treasury Department demanded that Ducey either restructure the $163 million program to eliminate restrictions it says undermine public health recommendations or face a repayment demand.

A U.S. District judge concluded it was reasonable for the Biden Administration to say that the money couldn’t be spent on efforts that would undermine compliance with Covid-19 prevention guidelines.

The judge said a program that requires noncompliance with guidelines may worsen the pandemic and create more negative effects, which goes against the purpose of the relief fund.

Ducey on the other hand, claimed the the American Rescue Plan Act wasn’t clear in the conditions it imposed on using the relief money.

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Cole Johnson

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