RALEIGH, N.C. -- It appears former or current U.S. tobacco growers will get their full, final annual payment from the quota buyout approved by Congress almost a decade ago.
The U.S. Agriculture Department has said the payments were subject to the next round of automatic budget cuts later this month and prepared former quota holders and growers for a 7 percent decrease for the final payment. But Secretary Tom Vilsack told North Carolina members of Congress this week there's a way to locate funds to complete the full payment by late 2014.
North Carolina's congressional delegation praised the announcement Tuesday.
North Carolina's 76,000 quota holders and producers had been projected to receive nearly $4 billion in cumulative annual payments through the 2004 buyout.