Tobacco Money on Hold
(BATON ROUGE) -- Private health-care providers are crying foul after [Louisiana] Commissioner of Administration Mark Drennan put 100 million dollars of tobacco money on hold.
Louisiana's portion of the recent settlement with big tobacco companies weighs in at 4.6 billion over 25 years, but at present all monies are in escrow pending acceptance by other states. Drennan says the state can not afford to "front" the money to private hospitals now serving poor people. Hospital administrators fear Drennan is stalling in case the legislature decides to use the money to make up for budget shortfalls.