Kentucky will receive about $110 million from an agreement between the state and tobacco companies over the state’s alleged mishandling of tobacco settlement funds.
An arbitration court ruled last year that Kentucky and five other states mishandled their management of the tobacco funds beginning in 2003. The funds have been paid by tobacco companies since 1998 to shore up state health-care costs associated with tobacco usage.
Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway negotiated with the companies. He says the money will be disbursed into state coffers in the next couple of weeks, and will be used to fund healthcare, education and agricultural programs.
“I want the folks in the agriculture community to hear me loud and clear. I want the folks in the public health community to hear me loud and clear. I want those in early childhood education to hear me loud and clear. We’re getting our full payment in 2014. We’re getting our full payment in 2014,” said Conway.
According to the agreement, tobacco companies are paying just 45 percent of the total amount of disputed funds, which is about $244 million.