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NEWS
By BLOOMBERG NEWS | February 18, 1997
WASHINGTON -- U.S. cigarette companies are in talks with anti-tobacco lawyers and state officials to settle all health-related lawsuits for as much as $250 billion, people involved in the negotiations said.The talks, held at hotels in Washington and Memphis, Tenn., and by telephone in the past few months, may settle lawsuits by 21 states to recoup billions of tax dollars spent treating smoking-related illnesses, the negotiators said. The negotiations, which intensified in the past month, also may end class action suits by smokers and their survivors, they said.
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HEALTH
By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun | May 5, 2014
Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler has sent letters to 10 e-cigarette manufacturers questioning what the companies are doing to prevent sales to underage buyers. The letters come as the safety and regulation of the devices face increased scrutiny. The makers of e-cigarettes say the devices are safer than traditional cigarettes and can help smokers quit, but reports of poisonings related to the products have spiked. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently said it is seeking regulatory authority over the devices.
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NEWS
July 20, 2000
DESPITE THOSE banner headlines and breathless predictions by TV commentators of bankrupting Big Tobacco, that $145 billion jury verdict in Miami last week isn't the end of the world for cigarette companies. Far from it. For starters, the trial judge will almost surely have to slash that astounding jury award dramatically to comply with a Florida law prohibiting awards that might bankrupt a company. Second, the two-year case seems ripe for appeals that might prove successful. Third, it could be many years, perhaps even a decade, before the companies exhaust legal challenges to the verdict.
NEWS
By Tyeesha Dixon and Tyeesha Dixon,SUN REPORTER | October 11, 2007
Baltimore health officials proposed yesterday requiring that all cigarettes sold in the city meet enhanced fire-safety standards - a move that they say would help prevent tragedies like the May fire that killed eight people in East Baltimore. The Health Department called for the new regulation with the release of a study showing cigarettes sold in Baltimore and in the rest of the state are substantially more likely to start fires than those sold in states with stricter safety standards.
NEWS
By Thomas W. Waldron and Thomas W. Waldron,SUN STAFF | March 8, 1998
With billions of dollars potentially at stake, top state officials and health advocates will square off this week against the tobacco industry and business groups over legislation designed to hurt cigarette manufacturers.Two legislative committees will hold hearings on what is emerging as one of the most heavily lobbied bills of the General Assembly's 90-day session -- a measure designed to help the state win its pending lawsuit against the cigarette companies.The measure, which was crafted by Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr., would rewrite state law to undo a key ruling last year by a Baltimore judge that crippled an important element of the state's court case.
NEWS
By Lyle Denniston and Lyle Denniston,SUN NATIONAL STAFF | August 24, 1996
WASHINGTON -- Labeling tobacco addiction a health epidemic among children, President Clinton ordered federal action yesterday to begin in six months to cut off youth access to cigarettes, chewing tobacco and snuff. In a year, the plan will attempt to reduce the advertising appeal of those items to minors.In one key change from the original plan, the administration dropped the idea that the industry would have to put up $150 million in a media campaign to discourage use of tobacco by children.
NEWS
By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE | May 11, 1997
A Minnesota state judge has ruled that cigarette companies must turn over thousands of scientific documents and other papers for court inspection and possible release to the public.Judge Kenneth Fitzpatrick said on Friday that lawyers for Minnesota had made a preliminary showing that the legal privilege that bars disclosure of communication between a lawyer and a client should be dropped, because a crime or fraud might have been committed.The procedural ruling does not mean that Fitzpatrick found that the companies had committed fraud.
NEWS
By ORLANDO SENTINEL | January 25, 1997
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- For years, the state of Florida manufactured high-nicotine and tar cigarettes in its prisons and sold them to hospitals and local governments knowing they were more addictive than heroin, lawyers for the tobacco industry charged yesterday.Documenting their claims with evidence culled from the state's own records, the tobacco lawyers said Florida was engaged in exactly the same conduct during the 1970s for which the state is now vilifying cigarette companies in its landmark lawsuit.
NEWS
By Thomas W. Waldron and William F. Zorzi Jr. and Thomas W. Waldron and William F. Zorzi Jr.,SUN STAFF | January 30, 1998
Setting the stage for a bruising State House battle with the tobacco industry, the Maryland attorney general's office is preparing legislation that would make it easier for the state to pursue its $13 billion lawsuit against cigarette manufacturers.The bill, which is expected to be introduced in the General Assembly next week, seeks to undo the effects of an adverse pretrial decision handed down by a judge last spring.State Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr. said the ruling hurt the state's case and forced him to seek a key change in the law in the midst of the lawsuit.
BUSINESS
By David Novich | April 5, 1998
ARIZONA Sen. John McCain's tobacco bill, introduced last week, is due to go before the full Senate after being approved by the Senate Commerce Committee.The bill would add a $1.10-per-pack fee on cigarette companies; place a $6.5 billion annual cap on legal damages stemming from lawsuits; impose penalties on cigarette makers if the number of underage smokers doesn't decline 60 percent in a decade; and restrict cigarette advertising.The bill would raise $516 billion over 25 years, making it a much stiffer package than the $368.
NEWS
By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE | September 22, 2004
WASHINGTON - Federal prosecutors alleged yesterday that the nation's tobacco companies colluded for half a century to addict Americans to nicotine in cigarettes that the industry knew caused cancer. Opening the largest civil racketeering trial ever, Justice Department attorneys used the cigarette companies' own internal documents to show how the industry set up sham research groups to counter medical evidence that smoking causes cancer and other diseases, even after industry scientists had secretly conceded the harmful effects on health.
BUSINESS
By JAY HANCOCK | September 25, 2002
DEMOCRATIC government, being driven by diverse forces, often works in contradictory and prodigal ways. But few public programs can beat Maryland and its wacky tobacco policy for mixed motives and dubious outlays. The state sued one part of the cigarette production chain - manufacturers - only to give large amounts of the litigation proceeds to another - tobacco farmers. Politicians want to preserve the state's open space and agricultural heritage. But they're working to wipe out tobacco growing, one of the few ways Maryland farmers can make a decent living.
NEWS
July 20, 2000
DESPITE THOSE banner headlines and breathless predictions by TV commentators of bankrupting Big Tobacco, that $145 billion jury verdict in Miami last week isn't the end of the world for cigarette companies. Far from it. For starters, the trial judge will almost surely have to slash that astounding jury award dramatically to comply with a Florida law prohibiting awards that might bankrupt a company. Second, the two-year case seems ripe for appeals that might prove successful. Third, it could be many years, perhaps even a decade, before the companies exhaust legal challenges to the verdict.
BUSINESS
By Jeff Brown and Jeff Brown,KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE | March 26, 2000
A colleague recently received a charming missive from her credit-card company after she started knocking down the $6,000 balance on a card that had been charging 19.99 percent. Dear Ms. ... Your recent payment activity suggests that you're trying to pay off your ... credit-card balance. It's simply good business for us to do whatever we can to help you. So we're lowering your ongoing interest rate to 16.9 percent ... There are no strings attached or gimmicks. Simply call ... and give us the go-ahead.
NEWS
By Scott Shane and Scott Shane,SUN STAFF | April 6, 1999
The latest round in the tobacco wars pits the selling prowess of Madison Avenue against the persuasive power of middle schoolers. As any parent will tell you, Madison Avenue better watch out.In a pre-Opening Day ceremony at Oriole Park at Camden Yards yesterday, three young artists who won a middle-school contest were honored for their anti-smoking posters, which will replace cigarette billboards in key locations around the state."
BUSINESS
By Ted Shelsby and Ted Shelsby,SUN STAFF | January 27, 1999
PRINCE FREDERICK -- Southern Maryland tobacco farmers are eyeing a sizable slice of the state's $4.2 billion settlement with cigarette manufacturers to help preserve an industry dating back to shortly after the first settlers arrived on the Ark and the Dove at St. Clement's Island in 1634.About 500 growers from the state's five tobacco-producing counties packed into the meeting hall at the Calvert County Fairgrounds Monday night and voted overwhelmingly in favor of a plan to have the state compensate them for any financial losses resulting from a decline in leaf sales linked to the settlement.
NEWS
By New York Times News Service | September 19, 1994
Thirteen chiefs and commissioners of fire departments around the country, most representing major cities, have called on the tobacco industry to manufacture fire-safe cigarettes, making use a simple technology that, they say, could save hundreds of lives each year.The coalition, forged by New York's City Fire Commissioner Howard Safir, includes the chiefs of the Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Atlanta, Houston and Miami departments. Also joining the call is the International Association of Fire Chiefs, representing 32,000 departments.
NEWS
By Robert B. Reich | April 23, 1998
THE tobacco companies say no. They won't agree to the new bill now moving through Congress that will require the industry to pay $506 billion over 25 years. It's too much, they say. And, besides, the bill won't give them immunity from lawsuits claiming damages to health. They'd rather fight than switch to bankruptcy.Congress and the president can still enact the law, of course. But if the tobacco companies choose to fight it, the law could be tied up in the courts for years. That's big tobacco's big threat.
NEWS
By Robert B. Reich | April 23, 1998
THE tobacco companies say no. They won't agree to the new bill now moving through Congress that will require the industry to pay $506 billion over 25 years. It's too much, they say. And, besides, the bill won't give them immunity from lawsuits claiming damages to health. They'd rather fight than switch to bankruptcy.Congress and the president can still enact the law, of course. But if the tobacco companies choose to fight it, the law could be tied up in the courts for years. That's big tobacco's big threat.
BUSINESS
By David Novich | April 5, 1998
ARIZONA Sen. John McCain's tobacco bill, introduced last week, is due to go before the full Senate after being approved by the Senate Commerce Committee.The bill would add a $1.10-per-pack fee on cigarette companies; place a $6.5 billion annual cap on legal damages stemming from lawsuits; impose penalties on cigarette makers if the number of underage smokers doesn't decline 60 percent in a decade; and restrict cigarette advertising.The bill would raise $516 billion over 25 years, making it a much stiffer package than the $368.
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