Attorney Terri Good told the legislators that the courts...not the State...should decide if Missouri hospitals will get about one-half of the tobacco settlement money to reimburse them for tobacco-related care.
The hospital association has filed suit to get that money. And Good warned the legislators their lawsuit could go pass the tobacco industry's deadline to settle the suit by the year 2001.
The committee also heard from other groups who are asking for a share of the tabacco money.
The attorney for Missouri hospitals warned legislators that an agreement as to who gets the tabacoo settlement money has to be reached by December 2001. Sakina Dewji has the story from Jefferson City.
Missouri hospitals want the state to use half of the tabacco money to reimburse them for tabacco-related care. The Hancock agreement however may require that the money be returned to taxpayers.
The State has to reach an agreement with the Missouri hospital litigants who have a lawsuit on reimbursement pending before the federal government issues the allocated money.