Counties across Tennessee are now receiving the first wave of money from a $15 million tobacco lawsuit settlement. The money will be targeted at reducing tobacco use among children and expectant mothers, along with cutting down on secondhand smoke.
Today and Friday, pubic health officials in Anderson, Roane and Loudon counties will be the latest to receive their first share of the money that was awarded to Tennessee as part of a 2012 settlement with the nation's largest tobacco producers.
Counties in East Tennessee are expected to more-or-less follow the plan to focus on pregnant women, children, and reducing secondhand smoke.
The $15 million will be distributed to all 95 counties in yearly installments through calendar year 2016.
For Anderson, that means a little more than $64,000. Roane and Loudon will each receive more than $38,000. In March, Blount County was given a little less than $70,000. Earlier this year, Knox County was awarded more than $327,000, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel. The first-year payout amounts will be repeated again next year and in 2016.