Resolution in Support of Recurring Funding for Tobacco Use Prevention and Cessation Programs

WHEREAS, the use of tobacco products is the leading cause of preventable death and disability in North Carolina[i] and nearly 8,700 North Carolina children will become regular daily smokers this year;[ii] and

WHEREAS, the primary purpose of the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) was to provide states with funding to remedy the public health problems and increased health costs posed by tobacco use; and

WHEREAS, in a 1999 law the North Carolina General Assembly dedicated 25% of the state’s annual MSA payments to health programs, including tobacco use prevention programs; and

WHEREAS, in 2011 $138 million in MSA funds came to the state, thus 25% of MSA funds would amount to approximately $34.5 million for tobacco use prevention and cessations programs in NC; and

WHEREAS, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that North Carolina spend $99.3 million a year to have an effective, comprehensive tobacco use prevention program;[iii] the tobacco industry spends an estimated $392.2 million annually to market its products in our state;[iv] and

WHEREAS, smoking costs North Carolina taxpayers $3.81 billion in direct healthcare costs ($931.4 million in Medicaid expenses alone), and $4.24 billion in lost productivity annually;[v] and

WHEREAS, since the elimination of North Carolina’s tobacco prevention programs in 2011, overall tobacco use among North Carolina high school students increased from 25.8% in 2011 to 29.7% in 2013. In the same two year period (2011-13), electronic cigarette use by North Carolina high school students increased by a staggering 352%.[vi]

WHEREAS, comprehensive statewide tobacco use prevention and cessation programs promote reductions in smoking levels among both adults and kids,[vii] thereby producing substantial state health care cost savings and reductions in other smoking-caused expenditures;[viii] and

WHEREAS, the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids estimates that without tobacco prevention funding in North Carolina, the youth smoking rate will increase by 2.5%, 13,180 more North Carolina kids will grow up to become addicted adult smokers and future healthcare expenditures in the state will increase by $230.6 million;[ix]

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the undersigned supports the dedication of 25% of North Carolina’s annual MSA payment to fund evidence-based tobacco use prevention and cessation programs in North Carolina.

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Updated June 2015

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[i] North Carolina Institute of Medicine, Task Force on Prevention, May 2008.

[ii] “Key State-Specific Tobacco-Related Data & Rankings.” Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. 30 Dec. 2014. Web. Available at http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/research/factsheets/pdf/0176.pdf.

[iii] “Key State-Specific Tobacco-Related Data & Rankings.” Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. 30 Dec. 2014. Web. Available at http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/research/factsheets/pdf/0176.pdf.

[iv] “The Toll of Tobacco in North Carolina.” Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, 8 Jan. 2015. Web. Available at http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/facts_issues/toll_us/north_carolina.

[v] “The Toll of Tobacco in North Carolina.” Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, 12 May 2015. Web. Available at http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/facts_issues/toll_us/north_carolina.

[vi] “North Carolina Youth Tobacco Survey Factsheet.” North Carolina Department of Public Health. 26 Sept. 2014. Web. Available at http://tobaccopreventionandcontrol.ncdhhs.gov/data/yts/yts11/NC_YTS_2013_Middle_and_High_School_Factsheet.pdf.

[vii] “Comprehensive Tobacco Prevention Funding and Cessation Programs Effectively Reduce Tobacco Use.” Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. 25 Nov. 2014. Web. Available at http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/research/factsheets/pdf/0045.pdf.

[viii] “Comprehensive Statewide Tobacco Prevention Programs Save Money.” Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. 3 Jan. 2012. Web. Available at http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/research/factsheets/pdf/0168.pdf.

[ix] “Impact on Youth Smoking, Deaths & Related Health Costs from Changes to North Carolina Tobacco Prevention Funding,” Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. 27 Aug. 2013. Web.

rob@idriveroi.comResolution in Support of Recurring Funding for Tobacco Use Prevention and Cessation Programs