An article in the Aug. 7 issue of Southeast Farm Press detailing tobacco buyout legislation inaccurately stated that a tobacco buyout bill introduced by Rep. Mike McIntyre (D-N.C.) had the backing of several groups, including the Tobacco Growers Association of Georgia, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.
The joint statement released by the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids had this to say about McIntyre's bill:
“The McIntyre legislation provides a framework for discussion, but it falls short of what farm leaders say they need and what public health leaders say they will support. It provides less money to tobacco farmers and their communities than the leading farm groups have informed us is necessary to prevent serious economic hardship for their families.
“It's failure to retain any form of price support program is likely to be the death knell for the family tobacco farm and will result in an undeserved financial windfall and transfer of wealth from farmers to the tobacco manufacturers in terms of reduced prices for leaf tobacco. It also fails to provide assistance to tobacco farming communities that will be hurt by enactment of this legislation.”
The statement continues, “The public health community is prepared to work with Rep. McIntyre and other Congressional leaders to develop legislation that will truly assist tobacco farmers and their communities and provide meaningful authority for FDA over manufactured tobacco products. His current bill does not do so and, therefore, has no chance of passage because it will be opposed by a unique coalition of major public health and tobacco farmer organizations.”