Report: State Ranks Last In Anti-Smoking Efforts

Dec 7, 2012

Credit Justin Shearer / Flick/Creative Commons

A new report ranks New Hampshire last in the nation when it comes to funding anti-smoking programs.

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids annual release says that New Hampshire allocated zero state funds for tobacco prevention efforts this fiscal year.

That’s despite the fact that the state collected more than $250 million dollars in tobacco tax revenue combined with the state’s portion of a 1998 settlement agreement.

Danny McGoldrick, VP of Research for the D.C.-based group, says the state needs to do better.

“These are really short-sighted, penny-wise, pound-foolish decisions that are going to hurt health, and the economy, in New Hampshire.”

The state does spend $1.3 million in Federal grant money on programs. That helps operate a ‘1-800-quit-line’ and other projects.

A spokesperson for Governor-elect Maggie Hassan says that the cigarette tax is a proven method for reducing smoking rates. He says the Governor wants to reverse the $.10 cut made by the last legislature.

Nearly 20% of adults in the state smoke cigarettes.

The reports says Alaska and North Dakota dedicate the highest percent of funds to prevention programs.