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      Lawmaker wants schools forced to drop American Indian mascots to get compensation

      Michigan lawmakers are introducing legislation requiring a state department to reimburse schools that may have to drop their American Indian mascots.

      The bills would take $3 million out of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights' budget to cover the costs for schools to change the mascots if a federal complaint succeeds.

      The department filed a complaint in February asking the U.S. Education Department to ban K-12 schools like Cheboygan from using such mascots.

      The complaint says they deny equal rights to American Indian students.

      Republican Rep. Dan Lauwers of Brockway says in a statement that a plan must be in place in case the "misguided complaint" succeeds.

      Department spokeswoman Vicki Levengood says they have recommended that schools are given extra time to change their mascots so they don't incur many expenses.