LOS ANGELES: County Gets First Big Chunk of Tobacco Settlement
California's Attorney General Bill Lockyer (D) made a "symbolic gesture" Thursday as he handed Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky a check for $79 million -- the county's first share of the $206 billion tobacco settlement promised to California and 45 other states. Because of the county's size, it receives "the lion's share" of the state's promised $1 billion payout over the next 25 years -- possibly getting more than $3 billion overall. Yaroslavsky pledged to use the money towards improving the health care needs of county residents. Annual county budget deliberations will be held in April to determine exactly how the county will use the funds. Los Angeles County was "among the first governments in California to sue the tobacco industry for deceitful and illegal marketing practices," (Ramos, Los Angeles Times, 2/4).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.