By Tony Romeo
HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — The attorney general’s office says a decision by a judge in Philadelphia means Pennsylvania will lose some tobacco settlement money, but not nearly as much as it might have.
The state sought to overturn an arbitration panel’s decision that questioned whether Pennsylvania had appropriately collected taxes and other payments from certain tobacco companies that did not sign the 1998 Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement.
Attorney General Kathleen Kane says a Philadelphia judge has now issued a ruling that means Pennsylvania will lose only $60 million dollars in tobacco settlement money, instead of three times as much.
“Pennsylvania got back $120 million that was taken from it by a federal arbitration panel, a multi-state panel,” said Kane.
Tobacco settlement monies fund smoking cessation, medical research and health programs, but a Corbett administration spokesman says it’s too soon to say how those programs may be impacted by the ruling. And the losing parties have the right to appeal it.