Treasurer opposes Jindal tobacco settlement sale proposal
BATON ROUGE - Treasurer John Kennedy is balking at Gov. Bobby Jindal's proposal to sell the remaining piece of Louisiana's tobacco settlement for upfront cash to pay for Louisiana's free college tuition program called TOPS.
The treasurer said Jindal has used too many quick fixes to drum up money to patch each year's budget together. He said Wednesday that a tobacco settlement sale would be more of the same, describing it as "hocking the family silver to pay the rent" and a "fire sale."
Jindal's chief budget adviser Kristy Nichols says Kennedy doesn't understand the administration's proposal. She says it would bring in $50 million in new revenue annually for up to eight years to pay for TOPS, not just a one-year infusion of cash.
The sale would need legislative and other approvals.