Home » State panel OKs $1.7 million in tobacco settlement funds for 12 counties

State panel OKs $1.7 million in tobacco settlement funds for 12 counties

118 Kentucky counties receive county allocations of tobacco settlement dollars

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 4, 2015) — A state panel has approved $1,692,296 for the County Agricultural Investment Program in 12 tobacco dependent counties.

Funds were approved by the state Agricultural Development Board for Campbell, Estill, Garrard, Grayson, Hancock, Henry, Jessamine, Marion, Meade, Montgomery, Muhlenberg and Trimble counties, according to Joel Neaveill of the Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy.

“The deposits for 2015 have been made into county account. This is the start of, probably over the next few months, a large dedication of county funds toward programs and projects,” said Neaveill.

A total of 118 counties receive county allocations of Kentucky tobacco settlement dollars.

The program, created with the passage of 2000 House Bill 611, determines a county’s “relative tobacco dependency” using several pieces of data from the 1997 agricultural census (the most recent at the time) including the number of tobacco farms in the county, price per pound of tobacco and a county’s total personal income, Neaveill said. The idea was for all 118 tobacco counties to have “a slice of that pie” relative to their level of dependency.

To ensure the formula worked, the county’s total personal income has to be adjusted each year, Neaveill said. Adjusting for a county’s total personal income ensures that those counties with a large amount of total personal income growth do not receive a disproportionate amount of county tobacco funds.

“The idea is that as personal income grows in a county, the tobacco number will reduce,” he said.

Counties receiving the largest allocation of MSA dollars generally had the largest amounts of tobacco quota at the end of the federal Tobacco Program in 2004.