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News Roundup

Wrongfully Convicted Black Man Gets $480,000 From State After Serving 18 Years

Your AM Rundown: Plus, lawmakers approve state income tax cut that will begin in the 2024 tax season.

Georgia lawmakers have approved compensation for Kerry Robinson, a Black man who served 18 years in prison on a wrongful conviction. (Georgia Innocence Project)

Top of the morning! Here is Your AM Rundown, with news updates in 400 words or less. Get caught up on headlines and other developments you might’ve missed. 

Here’s what to know for today: 

  • Georgia lawmakers gave clearance to a compensation package for a Black man who spent nearly two decades in prison for a crime he did not commit. HR 626 will award Kerry Robinson $480,000 for the 18 years he served in a 2002 rape case in the south Georgia town of Moultrie, three hours south of Atlanta. Robinson was exonerated in 2020 by DNA evidence and released from Coffee County Correctional Facility.
  • Georgia’s legislative session just ended, and, in the last hour, lawmakers approved a tax cut for residents starting with the 2024 tax year. The rollback will drop the state’s income tax rate from 5.49% to 4.99% over six years. The bill now heads to Gov. Brian Kemp’s desk for final approval.
  • Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams released her personal finances ahead of the May 24 primary, which show she is now worth $3.17 million. Republicans previously cast doubt on Abrams in her first bid because of a large IRS debt and an alleged net worth of $109,000. The bump in wealth follows Abrams’ ascent from her 2018 defeat in the governor’s race to becoming a political activist, author, and public speaker.
  • The U.S. Department of Justice is closing in on an investigation into Georgia’s prison system and its conditions. The DOJ filed a supoena with the U.S. Court for the Northern District of Georgia asking for the state’s compliance in releasing documents that outline training policies, staffing discipline and internal investigations materials relating to certain prisoners and incidents. Some of those include 53 in-house homicides that occurred between 2020 to 2021. The DOJ hopes the court will force the Georgia Department of Corrections to respond within 30 days of receipt.

ICYMI: We’re officially nine days away from Capital B’s third live event, The State of Black Maternal Health. The virtual event is set for April 14 at 1 p.m. ET, and will feature conversations on some of the most important topics related to maternal and reproductive health disparities. Registration is open.

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