(KMOV) – St. Louis County plans to use millions of federal dollars on ads to convince smokers to quit, but some say the money would be better spent creating jobs.
Some are so opposed to the ads that they want the county to give back the $6.7 million that’s being sent from Washington to the county health department.
The money is going to a website and program called Let’s Face It, dedicated to helping smokers quit.
The money comes from the 2009 stimulus bill when Congress tried to jump start the sagging economy.
The bill also dedicated money towards disease prevention, and that’s what lit the fire for critics.
Tony Palazzola of the group Keep St. Louis Free, a group that was against the St. Louis County smoking ban, is also worried that some of the money could be used to lobby county lawmakers to eliminate the exemptions to the smoking ban.
A spokesperson for the county says none of the money will go to any lobbyists.