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There was never any intention to use a bulk of the money for tobacco cessation programs. The argument made by states against the tobacco companies was that smoking illnesses cost states money. The tobacco settlement money was a reimbursement of money spent out of the general fund and had no strings or moral duty to be spent on tobacco programs.
The states agreed to the settlement which included elimination of marketing and other tobacco related concessions. If they didn't like the settlement they shouldn't have signed it. To say the money should have predominately been spent on tobacco issues is ludicrous. If anything, the state taxpayers should have been given a break by using the money to reduce the tax burden.
The Globe doesn't get it. The message isn't sent as the Nixon administration is still scanning and retaining personal information on Missourians. There is no law that allows it. In fact, the law says don't. There is no rule or regulation thats states how and when it will be done. In fact, the DOR specifically said they didn't promulgate any rules because it would cause too much problems if it were public.
The only way legislators can actually deliver messages is to exercise their Constitutional power to budget or not budget. The legislature should continue to wihthold funds as they have proposed.
The purported adminstration whining about the impacts of the cuts are THEIR choices on how to spend the money they are being provided not the legislatures.The Nixon administration could implement the cuts as intended by the legislature if they would do so. However, they are implementing the Obama sequestration approach - cause as much pain as possible so you can get what you want.
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