Do State Expenditures on Tobacco Control Programs Decrease Use of Tobacco Products Among College Students?

The objective of this paper is to investigate the effects of state tobacco control program expenditures on individual-level tobacco use behaviors among young adults. Data come from the 1997, 1999 and 2001 waves of the Harvard School of Public Health College Alcohol Study (CAS). Our findings indicate that a higher level of state spending on tobacco control programs in the prior year is associated with a statistically significant increase in the probability that current daily smokers report at least one attempt to quit smoking in the past year. We also find evidence that higher state expenditures on tobacco control programs in the prior year are associated with reductions in the prevalence of daily smoking and 30-day cigar use among college students. We do not find any statistically significant association between state tobacco control program expenditures and the number of attempts to quit smoking among those with at least one attempt, or on the prevalence of smokeless tobacco use in the past month.

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March 2011