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Rams owner Stanley Kroenke. Photo by Ted Soqui/Corbis via Getty Images

The NFL has agreed to settle a lawsuit with the city and county of St. Louis over the Rams' relocation to Los Angeles in 2016, a league spokesperson confirmed to Axios Wednesday.

Driving the news: The league will pay $790 million, according to St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones, to end the four-year dispute. Rams owner Stan Kroenke is expected to reimburse the NFL "for most or all of the settlement," the New York Times reports.

The big picture: St. Louis, St. Louis County and the St. Louis Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority sued the league in 2017, alleging that the NFL broke its own relocation guidelines to allow the Rams to move to Los Angeles.

  • The suit also claimed that the league misled the public on its plans to leave the city and cost the city millions in revenue.

Flashback: The Rams, who was one of three teams in 2016 that applied to relocate to Los Angeles, said it was doing so because it was unable to get enough public support to build a new stadium.

  • In 2014, then-Gov. Jay Nixon had employed a task force, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, that ultimately spent $18 million to design and plan a new stadium that would keep the Rams in the city.
  • But the league disregarded those efforts without explanation and team owners voted to allow the Rams to move to California, the Times wrote, citing the complaint.

Between the lines: A public trial, which was scheduled to start in January, would have involved not just Kroenke and the NFL but also the other team owners, who voted to allow the Rams to relocate.

  • At least 24 owners had to vote in favor of the move for it to proceed. The owners ultimately voted 30-2 in favor of the Rams relocating.
  • With the settlement, the owners will not have to testify on how the league makes the decision that a team can move or turn over financial documents and phone records.

What they're saying: Jones applauded the settlement on Wednesday, calling it historic.

  • "This historic agreement closes a long chapter and holds Kroenke and the NFL accountable for abandoning our region, securing hundreds of millions of dollars for our communities while avoiding the uncertainty of the trial and appellate process," Jones said.
  • She added that the three parties would work to decide how to allocate the settlement funds.

Go deeper

Updated Dec 2, 2021 - Sports

MLB enters first work stoppage since '95 as deal expires

Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred (left) and Major League Baseball Players Association executive director Tony Clark. Photo: Matt King/MLB via Getty Images

Major League Baseball's collective bargaining agreement expired at 11:59pm ET Wednesday without a new deal in place.

Why it matters: With no CBA, the MLB is in a management lockout — the first work stoppage since a 1994-95 strike led to the cancellation of the World Series for the first time in 90 years.

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Myanmar's deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi sentenced to 4 years in prison

An anti-coup protest in Yangon, Myanmar.Photo: Hkun Lat/Getty Images

A Myanmar court sentenced the country's ousted leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, on Monday to four years in prison on charges of "inciting public unrest" and breaking COVID-19 protocols, per the New York Times.

Why it matters: It's the first of several verdicts that could result in the 76-year-old Nobel laureate being imprisoned for the rest of her life. The 11 charges she faces have been widely criticised as politically motivated.

4 hours ago - World

Pope Francis denounces European governments' migrant response

Pope Francis adresses refugees at the Reception and Identification Centre (RIC) in Mytilene on the island of Lesbos on Sunday. Photo: Louisa Gouliamaki/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Pope Francis criticized European countries' response to migrants and asylum seekers during his visit to a refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos Sunday.

Why it matters: The pope said "migration is a humanitarian crisis that concerns everyone," but little had changed in the global response to displaced peoples since his first visit to Lesbos five years ago, per a transcript of his remarks. "Human lives, real people, are at stake. ... let us stop this shipwreck of civilization!"