To help fight the illegal sale and marketing of tobacco products to minors, the Colusa County Office of Education is receiving a $427,589 grant from the Department of Justice’s Tobacco Grant program.
“We will be working collaboratively with multiple county and city agencies including the Colusa County Sheriff’s Office, the Williams Police Department, Colusa County Public Health and each school district,” read a release issued by the CCOE. “The overall goal of the program will be to offer the monitoring, enforcement, education and outreach that will reduce and eventually eliminate the use of tobacco (nicotine) products and exposure to secondhand smoke/aerosol.”
According to the release, the agency will use the funding to provide services to students, family, and community members to educate, identify and eliminate tobacco expose in youth.
“Colusa County Office of Education will further use the grant to fund enforcement operations and projects, including an increase uniform presence at each school site to help increase student attendance amongst other objectives, enforcing tobacco and vape free school-related sporting and social events, and providing education for minors and their families,” read the release.
The grants were awarded to 76 local entities throughout the state in October.
“Tobacco is a serious threat to public health, especially to California’s youth,” said Attorney General Becerra. “These grants will support local communities in enforcing the law and educating kids about the harms of tobacco products. My office is dedicated to ensuring the state has the resources necessary to curb the dangers of tobacco and protect the public’s well-being. Preventing or reducing illegal sales of tobacco to minors will pave the way to a healthier California—we’re committed to tackling this public health crisis head on.”
The Department of Justice’s Tobacco Grant Program is funded by Proposition 56, or the California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016, which raised the cigarette tax by $2 per pack in April 2017 and allocates millions of dollars annually to investigations and compliance checks to reduce the illegal sale of tobacco products to minors.