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Lobbyist Money Help  

American Cancer Society lobbyist says Missouri fails to protect teens from tobacco

February 3, 2003
By: Elizabeth Gill
State Capital Bureau
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According to the National Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, tobacco companies spend almost a third of a billion dollars marketing products in Missouri, yet the state spends nothing to prevent teens from smoking.

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The Campaign, which lobbies for the American Cancer Society, says almost a third of Missouri teens smoke, which is higher than the national average.

The state has no plans to use tobacco settlement funds on health related issues.

Nor does Missouri support any anti-smoking campaigns with money collected through state tobacco sales.

Bill Corr is the Executive Vice President for the Campaign:

Actuality: corr2 "The state receives over $268 million dollars in tobacco generated revenue, yet it spends not one penny to protect its children from the marketing and promotion of the tobacco industry.
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Columbia representative Vicky Riback Wilson defends the state's position.

She says the current fiscal crisis makes it difficult to focus on long term goals like smoking prevention.

From the state capital, Elizabeth Gill, KMOX news.

One Missouri lawmaker defends criticism that the state fails to protect its kids from tobacco.

According to the National Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, tobacco companies spend almost a third of a billion dollars on marketing and promotion in Missouri.

The National Campaign lobbies for the American Cancer Society, and says Missouri spends none of its tobacco generated revenue on anti-smoking initiatives.

The state has no plans to use tobacco settlement funds on health related issues either.

State representative Vicky Riback Wilson says the current budget crisis has forced the state to make tough choices:

Actuality: wilson1 "Right now we're in an emergency situation and so we have to deal with the short term and then we focus our efforts on the very important longer term goals of prevention, life sciences."
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The Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids says almost a third of Missouri teens smoke, which is higher than the national average.

From the state capital, I'm Elizabeth Gill, KMOX News.