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    Tag: Tobacco Settlement

    Just when you thought it was safe to spend

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Sat Dec 18, 2010 at 06:14:54 PM EST
    Tags: Washington, Michigan, Schools, Tobacco Settlement, Money, Granholm (all tags)

    the Taxpayer's money...

    Remember all of those wonderful scholarships that once upon a time had funding through 'promises' and 'pledges' and earmarked tobacco cash?  

    Oh My.. THOSE were the days.

    $300 Million dollars a year dedicated to whatever the state wanted to do.  Completely fungible money, paid for by the health issues that state's attorneys argued cost the taxpayer in the first place.  $300 Million to pay for Johnnie and Suzie's college tuition once, and later, maybe 4100 million for a state police post that was not needed.  Gosh happy days, and dollar signs in the eyes of anyone who thought they could tap into the 'free money' promised by the settlement with big tobacco about 12 years ago.  Money so stable, that even spending it ahead of time was not out of the question.

    Umm  Folks?  Put the credit card down for a minute.  We seem to have hit a snag. It seems the agreement by attorney's general of several states, (GUESS WHO OUR AG AT THE TIME WAS? - Haha fooled you .. it wasnt YET the drooling over those funds JG to the right.) and some tobacco concerns represents an illegal compact between states, which is seen as unconstitutional.

    The background: The case was brought by the Competitive Enterprise Institute on behalf of a tobacco company, S&M Brands, a tobacco retailer and a cigarette consumer. The group sued the Louisiana Attorney General in 2005, claiming, among other things, that the Louisiana legislation which effected the terms of the 1998 settlement represented an illegal "compact" among states.

    Though this challenge is presented as 'unlikely' to succeed, the CEI is right.  The rule of law is on their side, which provides a troubling aspect of cure.

    How is this made right? How are damaged parties repaired?  What.. Is Michigan's liability after 12 years and $3.6Billion dollars worth of spending later?

    (1 comment) Comments >>

    Commission needed

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Fri Nov 19, 2010 at 07:29:10 AM EST
    Tags: Washington, Michigan, Schools, Tobacco Settlement, Money, DPS, Detroit, Bobb (all tags)

    You know, one like they have in Washington DC because the 160,000 congressional staffers cannot handle their bosses so well.  A couple of old school legislators who might have personally laid the groundwork for the ongoing failures we are seeing..  Except in THIS case, maybe its the legislators and school administrators not handling the school unions.. or SOMETHING so well.

    Detroit schools apparently have some gaping holes to fill, and they would like to do it with money that the state doesn't have yet. So to make ALL schools feel like they have failed as badly as the best laid liberal plans in Detroit, they have proposed using $400,000,000.00 in [future] tobacco settlement money to plug a couple hundred million of that leak. From the Detroit news:

    Rep. Fred Durhal, D-Detroit, sponsored the legislation in response to a request by Robert Bobb, emergency financial manager of the Detroit Public Schools.

    In an interview Monday with The Detroit News Editorial Board, Bobb said the district was asking for money from the state's settlement with tobacco companies to alleviate DPS' $327 million deficit. In return for the aid, DPS and other districts would implement reforms based on the federal Race to the Top initiative.

    b-but.. Wouldn't that be 'borrowing'?  And isn't a d-deficit against our constitution?

    (2 comments, 487 words in story) Full Story

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