Re: Speculation

It looks as if Andrew’s speculation might have been correct:

Lynch, who must approve such bonding authorizations, complained that he is being rushed. The problem: the tobacco money comes with strings attached.
“It’s dramatically different from other bonds that I sign,” he said. “This is the first time I’ve had to look at a bond along those lines.”
As of yesterday afternoon, he said he and his staff had not had enough time to examine all the strings. …
The state needs to be careful, Lynch said, because the tobacco companies, hoping to avoid paying some of that money, have begun challenging states that do not comply with the master agreement.
Lynch said he had no evidence that Rhode Island was not fulfilling its obligation under the pact, but he needs to be sure to avoid jeopardizing the funds the state needs for the coming fiscal year, and for additional money the state is expected to receive from the settlement further down the line.

There also appears to be a bit of ego fluffing involved, but it’s not necessary to emphasize that to be disgusted. For one thing, I’m not sure how the General Assembly’s inability to control its hand-out psychosis counts among “the societal costs of smoking.” More broadly, though, from the presumptuous money grab, to the misappropriation of the funds, to the willingness to throw away hundreds of millions of dollars to get a quick infusion now, the whole thing — and the whole state government — stinks.

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SusanD
SusanD
13 years ago

(Excerpt from article)
““I tried to warn the legislative leaders that only one signature was needed — and it’s mine,” he said. “It was somewhat stunning to me that they haven’t consulted me [on using the money for that purpose] or requested information on what it would do.”
Alves said Lynch should have come to his committee with any concerns. “When we post a hearing, we don’t go out and contact people. It’s up for anyone who has concerns to come forward.”
Lynch said he had no evidence that Rhode Island was not fulfilling its obligation under the pact, but he needs to be sure to avoid jeopardizing the funds …
“People are looking at me and saying, ‘Why haven’t I signed it?’ . . . I don’t want to jeopardize other monies coming into this state just to plug a budget hole,” he said. “I’m talking about maintaining the revenue stream for far more money than is in this year’s budget, so I can’t hurry things.””

This is ridiculous. Lynch knew six months ago that the state – more specifically, the powerful General Assembly – was planning to do this. Yet instead of doing his homework in a timely fashion, like the responsible state officer he is supposed to be, he waits until the budget is officially passed to vet the one component that requires his approval? And amazingly, is now complaining that no one sent him a graven invitation to the budget hearing or came to him on bended knee about doing this.
“A boon, a boon, sire. Prithee may we utilize yon funds to complete our budget?”

johnpaycheck
johnpaycheck
13 years ago

its obvious that ther eis a back room deal going on here…lynch wnats soemthing from the ga and this is leverage to get it… just wondering what it could be

Andrew
13 years ago

Well, the communications breakdown is perfectly understandable. It’s not like the AG’s brother is head of the Democratic party or anything.
Oh, wait…

PMartin
PMartin
13 years ago

Despite the obvious posturing by Lynch, it is quite amusing to hear Alves’ Napoleonic comments: “When we post a hearing, we don’t go out and contact people. It’s up for anyone who has concerns to come forward.”
Talk about power going to the little twerps head. Someone clue Alves into the fact that it is up to him to grovel for a change.
This entire charade is about power. Nothing more.

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