State lawmakers have already appropriated the money for it, but funds for a new state health laboratory remain suspended. Legislators voted to use $25-million in tobacco settlement funds plus another $5-million in general revenues to replace the temporary health lab now being used. Governor Bob Holden held up the money when the state got into a budget crunch. Senator Marvin Singleton of Seneca says the time has come to free up that money. In addition, he says using tobacco money for things other than health issues – such as balancing the budget – is a bad precedent.
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