Here is the latest South Carolina news from The Associated Press at 8:40 a.m.

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SC Statehouse (file)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster announced Monday that he’s allocating $32 million in need-based grants to cover tuition for students at private schools across the state. The funding is part of the governor’s $48 million discretionary education fund through an emergency federal funding package related to the coronavirus outbreak. McMaster says he expects the new program to cover about 5,000 grants of up to $6,500 for students at parochial, private and independent schools. Students from households with an adjusted gross income of up to 300% of the federal poverty level are eligible for the grant.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – A South Carolina lawmaker says any local government that removes a historical monument without the Legislature’s permission should lose state funding. Republican Rep. Bill Taylor of Aiken says he will push to get the rule placed in the state budget. Taylor says that would put teeth in the Heritage Act, which protects Civil War and other historical monuments. Meanwhile, the widow of state Sen. Clementa Pinckney is suing to overturn the act, saying she should be allowed to make changes to memorials to her husband, killed in a 2015 racist attack at a Charleston church. The state Supreme Court hasn’t decided if it will take the case.

RIDGEVILLE, S.C. (AP) – Walmart is building a new warehouse in coastal South Carolina that officials said will bring 1,000 jobs to the region. Officials say the massive $220 million facility will be built in Dorchester County near Ridgeville and should open by the fall of 2021. The warehouse will work with the South Carolina Ports Authority to directly import goods into Walmart’s supply chain. Company officials say the new 3 million square foot warehouse will ship goods to several other smaller distribution centers that send merchandise to about 850 Walmart and Sam’s Club stores in the South.

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) – A legal fight over removing a dam on the Savannah River is on hold while congressional representatives explore giving the dam to local governments who want to keep it. U.S. District Judge Mark Gergel agreed Friday to stay until Oct. 1 a lawsuit against the federal government by the state of South Carolina and the Georgia city of Augusta. Local governments want to keep the New Savannah Bluff Lock and Dam, saying removing it would produce an unacceptable drop in current river levels. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it’s legally required to move the dam to improve fish habitat to offset damage from deepening the ship channel at Savannah.

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