For Immediate Release
April 23, 2007
Annual Distribution of Tobacco Settlement Funds Helps Texas Communities Provide Health Care
AUSTIN —Comptroller Susan Combs has distributed $82.7 million to Texas communities from the Tobacco Settlement Permanent Trust Account. The money will help three cities, 160 counties and 133 hospital districts recover their costs for indigent health care provided during 2006.
“Since 2001, Texas’ settlement with tobacco companies has helped folks who cannot afford health care,’ Combs said. “Tobacco settlement money helps local communities provide access to health care, regardless of patients’ ability to pay.”
The Tobacco Settlement Permanent Trust Account, established after the state settled a lawsuit against tobacco companies, has grown to a $2.3 billion trust fund. The Comptroller manages and oversees the fund, with the guidance of the 11-member Tobacco Settlement Permanent Trust Account Investment Advisory Committee.
“Because of solid investment performance and prudent oversight, this year’s distribution to local entities increased 15 percent over last year’s distribution,” Combs said. “Since the first distribution of funds in April 2001, local entities have received nearly $288 million from the trust fund.”
Cities, counties and hospital districts receive annual distributions of tobacco settlement money, based upon the amount of unreimbursed indigent health care they report to the Texas Department of State Health Services.
A list of cities, counties and hospital districts receiving tobacco settlement funds this year is available on the Texas Department of State Health Services Web site at www.dshs.state.tx.us/tobaccosettlement/default.shtm.