• Journal Article

Rural economic development vs. tobacco control? Tensions underlying the use of tobacco settlement funds

Citation

Austin, W., & Altman, D. (2000). Rural economic development vs. tobacco control? Tensions underlying the use of tobacco settlement funds. Journal of Public Health Policy, 21(2), 129-156.

Abstract

Some public health advocates in tobacco states, having reconsidered the impacts of the federal tobacco price-support program, have negotiated common tobacco regulatory policy stances with tobacco grower representatives. This paper describes the impact of this rapprochement on the state-level negotiations of Master Settlement Agreement funds. It argues that there are indeed two worthy public health goals: tobacco control and the economic viability of tobacco dependent communities (TDCs), but the immediacy of the threat to the latter, the political potency of tobacco growers, and growers' goal of maintaining tobacco as their farms' anchor bring severe risks to the tobacco control portion of Settlement funds. Among three competing philosophies of economic development for TDCs, none are well evaluated, and two potentially create endless demands on Settlement resources. Public health policy advocates are urged to participate in negotiations on TDC economic development and to forcefully advocate for adequate tobacco control resources