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Recipients Chosen for Cigarette Tax Funds

October 10, 2000|MATT SURMAN

The local commission established to distribute $11.7 million in annual cigarette tax revenues to help Ventura County children has announced plans to give $140,000 to projects that improve access to services and to programs it deems innovative.

These latest grants are part of $800,000 in funding that has been earmarked for local groups, ranging from established nonprofit organizations to local day-care centers.

In January, the Children and Families First Commission will decide how it will spend $1.6 million for physical and mental health projects. An applicants' conference will be held Oct. 26, with applications due on Nov. 29.

The remaining funds will be doled out as part of a yearlong process.

This latest funding will go to five programs: El Centrito De La Colonia in Oxnard, which promotes English skills; the Santa Paula Elementary School District's Child Development and Preschool Program, to build handicapped-accessible playground equipment; Four Winds School in Ojai, which will purchase recording equipment to study the learning process in young children; an immunization registry sponsored by Clinicas del Camino Real, which serves farm workers in Oxnard and Ventura; and a conference program for high-risk families sponsored by New Horizons Outreach and Kids & Families Together in Ventura.

Local commissions were formed across the state after the passage of Proposition 10, a 1998 measure that added a 50-cent-per-pack tax on cigarettes to raise money to expand programs for children under 5.

For more information, contact the commission at 677-5553.

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