Competing tobacco tax initiatives prompt concerns from the group that got the ball rolling. The Committee for a Healthy Future was the first to file a tobacco tax initiative. This coalition – made up of such organizations as the American Lung Association, the American Heart Association, and the American Cancer Society – wants to use the added revenues primarily to pay for smoking prevention programs and tobacco-related health costs. The Committee’s Cindy Erickson says this effort is not politically motivated – unlike the effort of the second group – the Missouri Alliance for Health and Justice. The Alliance wants to use most of the money raised to restore Medicaid cuts. Erickson says that makes no sense. Approximately 150,000 valid signatures are needed to get an initiative on next November’s ballot.
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