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January 29, 2014     Feather River Bulletin
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January 29, 2014
 

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6B Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014 Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter Lung association says tobacco use still health crisis The battle to reduce tobacco use has all but stalled in most cities and counties in Northern California. Those were the findings of the American Lung Association State of Tobacco Control 2014 report released recently. Fifty years after the first Surgeon General's Report on Smoking and Health was issued Jan. 11, 1964, the Lung Association's new report finds that our nation as a whole must renew its commitment to eliminate tobacco-caused death and disease. Locally, the city of Oroville made advances in protecting youths from the dangers of smoking by adopting a strong tobacco retailer license, which raised its overall tobacco control grade from an F to a C, the top overall grade in the region, Grades were mixed throughout, highlighting the need for local officials to better protect Northern California residents from tobacco-related death and disease. "Despite making great strides in reducing smoking rates in America, there is still much work to be done here in Northern California," said Anita Lee, interim CEO of the American Lung Association in California. "Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death and illness in the U.S. We must renew our commitment to stopping tobacco from robbing another generation of their health," Lee urged. The State of Tobacco Control 2014 report tracks yearly progress on key tobacco control policies at the federal and state levels, assigning grades based on whether laws are adequately protecting citizens from the enormous toll tobacco use takes on lives and the economy. This year's report highlights the 50th anniversary of the historic 1964 surgeon general's report that linked smoking to lung cancer and other diseases for the first time. In conjunction with the national report, the American Lung Association in California released its State of Tobacco Control 2014 - California Local Grades, which issues grades for all 482 cities and 58 counties in California on local tobacco control policies. To view the complete California report, including grades for cities and counties in Northern California, visit lung.org/california. Once a national leader in tobacco control policies, California is now falling behind in protecting its citizens from tobacco. While the state earned an A grade for smokefree air policies, it received a D for its low cigarette tax, an F for failing to sufficiently fund tobacco prevention and control programs and another F for poor coverage of smoking cessation and treatment services. Many municipalities throughout California have passed local ordinances to protect their communities from the harmful effects of Total Points 12 0 0 Dining Entryways Public Events Recreation Areas Service Areas 4 Sidewalks 1 Worksites 1 Total Points 22 ' "  ................... ;i' iiii i:' ; i!!':,:iiiiii  ,.  .: Nonsmoking Units 4 Nonsmoking Common Areas 4 Disclosure 4 Nuisance 1 Housing Authority Units 1 Total Points 14 4 0 0 4 0 0 4 0 0 4 0 2 O' 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 o o o o o o o o o 1 0 1 Tobacco Retailer Licensing 4 0 0 Sales near Schools and Parks 1 0 0 Sales in Pharmacies 1 0 0 Sampling of Tobacco Products 1 0 0 Total Points 7 0 0 Grades are based on a point tally as follows. The overall tobacco control grade A (11 - 12), B (8 - 10), C (5 - 7), D (2 - 4), F (0 - 1) is determined by grades and points from the other three categories: A (4), B (3), C (2), D (1), F (0). Smokefree outdoor air grade: A (18-plus), e (13 - 17), C (8 - 12), D (3 - 7), F (0 - 2). Smokefree housing grade: A (11-plus), B (8 - 10), C (5 - 7), D (2 - municipalities -- received an F for their overall tobacco grade. "The policies reflected in this report demonstrate the leadership at the local level to ensure that all Californians breathe clean and healthy air," said Marsha Ramos, chairperson, American Lung Association in California governing board. "No matter how big or small the city or county, local tobacco control policies saves lives. Tobacco use continues to take a toll on the lives of both adults and kids, so thee grades represent real health consequences." In the 50 years since the first surgeon general's report, 8 million lives were saved because of tobacco control efforts. In 1964, the national smoking rate was at 42 percent, more than double today's rate of 18 percent. Despite these improvements and progress shown at the local level, tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of death in the nation. In California, tobacco use causes an estimated 36,000 deaths annually. More than 30,000 kids start smoking each year in the state, and tobacco use costs the state's economy $18.1 billion in combined health care and lost 4), F (0 - 1). Reducing sales of tobacco products grade: A (4-plus), productivity -- a tremendous B (3), C (2), D (1), F (0). Graphic courtesy American Lung Association burden that California cannot tobacco, despite the lack of action at the state level. In 2013, a total of 40 cities and counties adopted new policies. However, while many communities took action to improve their grades, atotal of 330 cities and counties throughout the state -- more than 60 percent of all afford. Meanwhile, said the American Lung Association, the tobacco industry continued its ruthless pursuit of addicting new users and keeping current users from quitting in 2013. This included efforts at the federal and state levels to exempt their products from meaningful public health protections. The three largest cigarette manufacturers -- Altria, Reynolds American and Lorillard -- continued their aggressive expansion into tobacco products other than cigarettes in 2013. As cigarette use continues to gradually decline, these companies continue to maintain their stranglehold on America's youth and reap profits from smokeless tobacco, cigars and now e-cigarettes, according to the American Lung Association. "I urge everyone to join the American Lung Association in California and renew their commitment to preventing another 50 years of tobacco caused death and disease," said Ramos. About the American Lung Association in California Now in its second century, the American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease. The American Lung Association is "fighting for air" through research, education and advocacy. For more information about the American Lung Association or to support the work it does, call 800-LUNG-USA (800-586-4872) or visit lung.org/california. Teachers' association comments on stal:0000 budge00 proposal : In his 2014-15 state budget released recently, Gov. Brown proposed the complete elimination of funding for the Agricultural Education Incentive Grant, which supports high-quality agricultural education funds for districts that commit to meeting state-approved program Standards in ag education, including classroom instruction, supervised agricultural experience projects and leadership programs and FFA activities in more than 300 high schools statewide, with more than 74,000 students enrolled in programs offered in a wide variety of urban, suburban and rural settings. stas m public schls, wammg tn th the Future Students enrolled in these refliifffrn" "=? :: '"Frs o rica stulent': programs are representative Agricultural Teachers ....... ......... organizati0. ' : of California's social and Association. The Agricultural Education ethnic diversity, with This grant program is Incentive Grant currently Hispanic students making up designed to provide matching supports local ag education 51 percent of current ag education enroUment,'while 35 percent are white. "We are extremely disappointed that Gov. Brown has proposed eliminating g education funding in California, the leading agricultural-producing state in the nation," said Jim Aschwanden, executive director of the California Agricultural Teachers' Association. "These programs are vital if we expect to attract bright, talented and innovative students to help meet the many challenges facing both agriculture and the state of California over the next several decades. The elimination of support for high-quality rigorous program standards sends a clear message to schools that agriculture and these programs are not important for the future of our state economy. We think this is a terrible mistake." The California Agricultural Teachers' Association is a professional education association representing more than 700 instructors in agricultural education at the middle school through university levels in California, with headquarters located in Elk Grove. 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