SALISBURY, N.C. (AP) -- The years-long fight over a North Carolina county commission's practice of opening meetings with Christian prayers and inviting audience members to join is over, with commissioners agreeing to pay $285,000 in legal fees.
The Salisbury Post reports that Rowan County commissioners on Monday unanimously approved the payment to the American Civil Liberties Union, in conjunction with a December court order.
The ACLU represented three county residents who sued over the prayer practice, which began in 2007.
Commissioners Chair Greg Edds called the ACLU "bullies" for its role in the lawsuit. The North Carolina ACLU said in a statement that it was happy courts ruled in their clients' favor.
The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the commission's appeal last summer.