Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway - July 2014

jim conway 300KENTUCKY (7/2/14) — In June, I joined Governor Steve Beshear in announcing a crucial settlement that restores certainty to Kentucky’s annual payments from the tobacco Master Settlement Agreement, providing essential funding to our farmers, childhood development programs and public health initiatives for the foreseeable future.

Kentucky joined the historic MSA in 1998 with the country’s four largest tobacco manufacturers, and many other smaller tobacco companies subsequently agreed to sign on.

The tobacco companies entered into the MSA with states and their attorneys general to repay hundreds of millions of dollars that the states had spent in the past to pay for the smoking-related illnesses of their citizens. It was the result of the largest class action lawsuit in the history of the United States. The MSA also placed certain restrictions on the way tobacco products could be advertised and branded, specifically to children. Gone are the images of Joe Camel, the Virginia Slims Tennis Tournament, and the Winston Cup.

Each year, the companies make payments to the states, and in turn, the states have the duty to enforce the terms of the MSA agreement by policing non-participating manufacturers – the tobacco companies operating outside of the MSA framework.

More than a decade ago, the participating tobacco companies decided to challenge each state’s enforcement efforts, and since that time, there has been a complex legal battle between the tobacco companies and the states over portions of the payments.

An arbitration panel ruled last year that Kentucky did not diligently enforce the MSA in 2003, during a previous governor and attorney general’s terms. This arbitration decision resulted in a reduction to the MSA payment for 2014. While I disagree with that ruling, continuing to litigate this decade-long issue would have put the Commonwealth in grave danger of losing half of our $100 million payment for this year, and it would have left our payments in limbo for years to come, costing Kentucky millions of dollars in litigation fees with no resolution in sight. This wasn’t going to work for Kentucky.

That’s why I reached out to the tobacco companies to determine how we could get the train back on the tracks and work together to end the litigation and find an agreement that was suitable for all parties. The result is an agreement that fully restores Kentucky’s MSA payment for 2014 and will result in a net gain of $57.2 million for Kentucky.

To date, Kentucky has invested more than $400 million of MSA funds to increase farm income, diversify crops, and create business opportunities for farmers. We have also funded early child development programs and devoted a significant portion of this fund to public health initiatives, including anti-smoking campaigns and cancer research. This settlement ends a long-running dispute, and it will allow our Commonwealth to continue supporting these imperative programs and services.

The settlement is one Kentucky can be proud of. This is great news for our farmers, communities, and health advocates, and the settlement will continue to have a positive impact on the Commonwealth. These funds are critical to Kentucky, and we can’t afford to lose them.

I appreciate Governor Beshear and his staff working diligently with my staff to hammer out a settlement that is good for Kentucky and will ensure our tobacco payments for decades to come.

SurfKY News
Information provided by Daniel Kemp

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Latest Video

3/13 - 16

Stock Report

1 DOW 17,094.91
-77.77 (-0.45%)    
2 S&P 1,982.77
-11.52 (-0.58%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,508.69
-19.00 (-0.42%)    
3/13 - 16
3/13 - 16

In Other News...

Charges Filed Against Three in Huge Marijuana Bust

LYON COUNTY, Ky. (9/23/14) — Arrests have been made stemming from a search warrant that was executed at 118 Cinder… Read More

Brief Traffic Stoppage on US 41-A South of Hopkinsville for Explosive Detonation

CHRISTIAN COUNTY, Ky. (9/22/14) — A contractor for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is moving ahead with… Read More
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

September 19, 2014 4915

Madisonville Man Among Three Arrested for…

in Top Stories by Muhlenberg Sheriff Curtis McGehee
September 20, 2014 3785

Large Cache of Drugs, Cash, Gun Seized;…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 19, 2014 2898

Five Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision at…

in Top Stories by MPD Officer Russell Nichols
September 22, 2014 2811

Medical Emergency Ends in Drug Arrest at…

in News by Madisonville Police Department
September 19, 2014 2620

Focus on Hopkins County: Crossfire

in News by Focus on Hopkins County

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

September 19, 2014 2898

Five Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision at…

in Top Stories by MPD Officer Russell Nichols
September 22, 2014 2000

Man Arrested for Slashing Tires

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
September 22, 2014 1776

Man Strikes Tree, Arrested for DUI,…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
September 19, 2014 1541

My Kentucky Roads - Twin Maples Farm in…

in Top Stories by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
September 20, 2014 1231

Teams Race to Benefit Hopkins County…

in Top Stories by Ami Clayton, SurfKY News

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

September 20, 2014 1166

Man Charged with Theft After KSP…

in Top Stories by Alexis McGee
September 19, 2014 935

STREET CLOSINGS FOR MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 22

in Top Stories by Abby Shelton
September 19, 2014 922

Police Searching for Hit-And-Run Driver

in Top Stories by Jennifer Smith, DCSO
September 22, 2014 521

Buffalo Paint Out Brings Regional Artists…

in Top Stories by Owensboro Museum of Fine Art
September 19, 2014 423

Owensboro Museum of Fine Art News

in Top Stories by Owensboro Museum of Fine Art

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

September 20, 2014 3785

Large Cache of Drugs, Cash, Gun Seized;…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 22, 2014 1884

Third Suspect Charged in Greenville Home…

in Top Stories by MCITF PIO Wes Miller
September 20, 2014 1846

Paradise NRA Banquet Promises Food, Fun,…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
September 22, 2014 1226

Muhlenberg Bass Team Members Score…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
September 22, 2014 1192

Hundreds Turn Out for Greenville Festival

in Top Stories by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 03social 04social 22social 21social 06