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SD Uses Tobacco Settlement Dollars For Education

May 13, 2014, 6:10 AM

SD Uses Tobacco Settlement Dollars For Education
PIERRE, SD -

South Dakota has directed annual funds from a 1998 tobacco settlement toward a state trust fund for education.

Top cigarette makers have made about $6 billion in annual payments to 46 states to cover smoking-related health care costs. States are not required to use that money on tobacco-related programs.

South Dakota officials will deposit $4.8 million from this year's settlement in the Education Enhancement Trust Fund.  The remaining $18.8 million this year will make up bond payments due to the trust fund backers.

In 2002, the state created the trust fund with money from Educational Enhancement Funding Corporation bonds. It is paid back annually from the tobacco settlement dollars.

The trust fund currently has $480 million. Four percent of the fund's market value must go to education enhancement each year.

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