Massachusetts Lawmakers Receive National Distinguished Advocacy Award for Championing Lifesaving Cancer Public Policy
BOSTON – Massachusetts Rep. Danielle Gregoire and Massachusetts Sen.
AVON, Colo.—Nov. 7, 2018—The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) in Colorado praises Avon voters for passing a tobacco tax increase that will help curb tobacco use, protect kids and raise new revenue for the community. Ballot Issue 2B will raise the price of cigarettes by $3 per pack and increase the cost of other tobacco products including electronic cigarettes by 40 percent.
R.J. Ours, the Colorado government relations director for ACS CAN, said:
"We are thrilled that Avon voters saw the overwhelming health and financial benefits of this tobacco tax for their community. Strong tobacco tax increases like this one in Avon are effective at reducing tobacco use because they help adults quit, while also preventing youth from becoming addicted.
"Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death and disease, and 5,100 people in Colorado will die from smoking this year. Tobacco use also causes nearly 26 percent of all cancer deaths in Colorado, so it’s critical to reduce consumption of these deadly products to fight and prevent cancer.
"In addition to reducing death and disease from tobacco, Avon will see a big fiscal reward from this tax increase. Taxpayers will also see the benefits due to lower health care costs from smoking-related illnesses.
"Aspen, Basalt and now Avon have all passed significant local tobacco tax increases and other measures to combat tobacco use in their communities. They have clearly become leaders in local tobacco control efforts, and we look forward to working with other communities across the state as well as our state legislators to build on this momentum and continue fighting tobacco in Colorado."
Colorado has not raised its tobacco tax since 2005, and currently has one of the lowest tobacco taxes in the entire country. The toll of tobacco use is high, and taxpayers shoulder much of the direct medical costs that result from treating tobacco-caused illnesses. Smoking-related illness in the Centennial State costs nearly $1.9 billion a year, or $698 per household, including roughly $386 million in Medicaid care.
About ACS CAN
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is making cancer a top priority for public officials and candidates at the federal, state and local levels. ACS CAN empowers advocates across the country to make their voices heard and influence evidence-based public policy change as well as legislative and regulatory solutions that will reduce the cancer burden. As the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN is critical to the fight for a world without cancer. For more information, visit www.fightcancer.org.
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