N.H. Near Last in Spending to Combat Tobacco Use

Dec 13, 2017

Credit FILE

New Hampshire ranks near the bottom in the country when it comes to funding anti-smoking programs and prevention. 

According to a national report released Wednesday, New Hampshire ranks 47th among the 50 states. New Hampshire currently spends $140,000 a year on tobacco prevention, and on programs aimed at helping smokers quit. That’s less than 10 percent of what the CDC recommends.

Meanwhile New Hampshire collects on average about $220 million in tobacco taxes as well as $42 million from the 1998 landmark tobacco settlement - each year. Under the settlement, these funds are supposed to go to curbing tobacco use.

Mike Rollo, a lobbyist for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network of New Hampshire, said this funding is nowhere near enough.

"Well, it means that thousands of people every year that want to quit smoking and don't have access to any other means than the NH quit line - won't get the assistance that they need."

On average 1,900 people die from tobacco-related use each year in New Hampshire.