OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust Board of Investors has certified $26.8 million in earnings for use in the coming year to combat tobacco addiction and other health issues, State Treasurer Ken Miller announced today.
Miller is chairman of the board that oversees investment of Oklahoma’s share of the national Master Settlement Agreement. The board certified the annual earnings on Wednesday.
“We have prudently invested this money to ensure Oklahomans get the most out of every dollar,” Miller said. “The earnings gained in the past year demonstrate we are doing our best to maximize investment of these funds held in trust for the benefit of the people of Oklahoma.”
Oklahoma is the only state with a constitutionally-protected endowment to fund health programs. Voters approved creation of the endowment in 2000. Since its inception, more than $144 million in earnings have been certified by the board of investors.
The endowment contains more than $700 million. Investment of the fund is managed by the board of investors. Spending of the earnings is controlled by a separately-appointed board of directors.
A total of 75 percent of Oklahoma’s share of the national Master Settlement Agreement is placed into the endowment each year. The remainder of the settlement payments is appropriated by the Legislature.
# # #
For more information contact:
Tim Allen, Deputy Treasurer for Communications & Program Administration