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Iowa Gets Nearly $72M in Yearly Tobacco Payment

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa received $71 million this week from tobacco companies - its annual share of a 1998 landmark legal settlement in which tobacco companies pay states for smoking-related health care costs.

The Iowa Attorney General's Office says that since 1999, the state has received more than $960 million in tobacco payments.

This week's payment included a regular annual sum of more than $54 million as part of the master agreement and an additional "Strategic Contribution Fund" payment of more than $17.5 million.

The payment also includes a $6 million tobacco arbitration judgment from a case in which cigarette manufacturers claimed Iowa did not diligently enforce its tobacco statutes in 2003. A unanimous three-judge panel sided with Iowa in the case last year.

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