What's Fair Trade Missouri All About?
Fair Trade Missouri is a statewide coalition formed to advocate closing the Allocable Share Release loophole in Missouri. Doing so will protect the state from losing well over $1 billion in funds derived from the Master Settlement Agreement, a loss that would negatively impact important programs such as early childhood development, mental health and veterans services, to name a few. To that end, Fair Trade Missouri is working to advance efforts to pass the Allocable Share Amendment.
The state’s lowest-in-the-nation tax on cigarette sales is only the beginning. Lawmakers have long allowed the makers of off-brand smokes to maintain a competitive advantage over larger cigarette producers.
The legislators now appear ready to sacrifice a hefty amount of funding for schools, mental health and other state services so their friendly manufacturers can continue to sell cheap cigarettes.
This coddling of off-brand tobacco manufacturers shines an ugly light on a legislature plagued by weak leadership and unwilling to put the good of the state above even the most unhealthy of special interests.
Missouri stands as the only state in the country that has not closed the Allocable Share loophole by passing the Allocable Share Amendment.
- Close the “Allocable Share Release” loophole by ensuring that NPM’s escrow deposits are not immediately released, or refunded.
- Restore competitive balance by creating a level playing field that ensures all tobacco manufacturers and retailers are treated similarly.
- Still provide for NPMs to receive interest on the funds they place in escrow and guarantee that the funds in escrow will be returned, if the state does not settle with them or obtain a judgment against them within 25 years.