Although smoking costs the state billions of dollars annually, none of the tobacco settlement money and only 3.2 percent of tobacco revenue goes toward prevention.
Tobacco costs Oregonians at least $2.4 billion a year in direct and indirect costs related to smoking and tobacco use. That’s over $13 per pack of cigarettes sold, nearly three times what the smoker pays. A recent report by the American Lung Association and Penn State University estimates that tobacco costs Oregon even more at $3.3 billion a year or $18.83 per pack.
Despite these staggering estimates, only 3 cents of the $1.18 tax per pack of cigarettes in Oregon goes toward tobacco reduction efforts. In other words, only 3.2 percent of the estimated $260 million in tobacco-generated revenue the state collects every year from tobacco taxes is spent on tobacco reduction efforts.