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The Montana Board of Regents is scheduled to discuss distributing additional COVID-19 funding to campuses during its Tuesday meeting.

In the virtual meeting at 9:30 a.m., board members will approve the allocation of federal and state dollars the university system has received since it last distributed money in the fall.

If the spending allocations are approved, Montana State University will receive about $16 million out of the $43 million in COVID-19 funding coming to the university system next year, according to meeting documents.

The Board of Regents last approved spending in September. Since then, the university system was awarded additional coronavirus relief funds and Governor’s Emergency Education Relief money from the governor’s office.

After the passage of another COVID-19 relief bill by Congress in December, the university system expects to receive additional funding in 2021.

The Board of Regents or the Commissioner of Higher Education must approve the new spending allocations, according to meeting documents.

The $16 million in new funding is the highest of any university system campus. Second highest is the University of Montana with $12.5 million, and third is MSU Billings with $4 million.

In addition, MSU will receive money specifically allocated for student relief. According to the meeting documents, it will receive $74,085 for student emergency grants and $5,280,040 from CARES Act student funding.

Tyler Trevor, deputy commissioner for budget and planning with the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education, said the allocations are based on what the university system expects to receive next year.

Trevor said the process is similar to how the university system divided funds between campuses last spring and fall. The January and July meetings are typically to approve business items that are outstanding, he said.

In August, the university system received about $20 million in federal CARES Act money, $6.5 million of which went to MSU. The university has previously said it used the bulk of the money to increase student testing and hire contact tracers and case managers.

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Liz Weber can be reached at lweber@dailychronicle.com or 582-2633.

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