New York Ranked 21st in Funding to Stop Smoking

SmokingNew York has been ranked 21st among states in funding for smoking cessation programs. The ranking was awarded by a national coalition of anti-smoking advocates.

It was seen this month that the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids included New York among states that did not live up to their promises to battle smoking by using all or most of the money from the historic tobacco company settlement 15 years ago.

It was reported this month by the group that about $40 million is all that New York is spending on tobacco prevention programs. There have been considerable annual declines over the last decade. The current spending is mere
16% of the $254 million in yearly funding. Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended the funding for New York to battle smoking.

Blair Horner of the New York Public Interest Group said, "The systematic dismantling of the state's tobacco control program is having real-life consequences as fewer smokers are getting the help they need to quit, while paying the highest cigarette taxes in the nation".

According to Horner, it is not good news for such an important program that only it has witnessed deeper annual cuts than most areas in recent years. The funding has sought a decline from 85 million under Gov. Eliot Spitzer in
2007 to just over $39 million currently.