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Mountain View Earns a ‘D’ for Its Tobacco Policies

The state of California also received failing grades from the American Lung Association.

The American Lung Association in California gave the city of Mountain View a "D" rating for its tobacco policies.

This despite a stricter smoking ban that bars tobacco on restaurant patios and within 25 feet of doors and windows to any commercial business. For their outdoor efforts the city received a "C." But for not banning smoking in housing, the city received an "F", which brought the average down.

The annual report, released Wednesday, issues grades for all cities and counties in California on local tobacco control policies including those for smokefree outdoor environments, smokefree housing, and reducing sales of tobacco products.

Overall, the association said the state of California "falls short in adequately funding tobacco prevention programs to protect children and curb tobacco-caused disease." California earned an "A" grade for its smokefree air policies but received a "D" for its low cigarette tax, an "F" for failing to adequately fund tobacco prevention and control programs, and another "F" for poor coverage of smoking cessation and treatment services.

"Cities and counties in California have always led the way with strong tobacco control policies, and that continues to this day," said Fred Lurmann, Chair of the Leadership Board of the American Lung Association in California – Greater Bay Area. "Safeguarding our communities from the negative consequences of tobacco is critical. The low grades represent real health consequences."

The association also criticized the state for not increasing its cigarette tax since 1999 and spending only 15 percent of what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends to adequately fund tobacco prevention programs and services to help people quit smoking.

There are about 3 million new youth smokers in the U.S. and 34,400 in California every year. About 37,000 deaths are caused by tobacco use, according to the U.S. Surgeon General.

"We need to do more to fight the influence of tobacco interests in California politics," said American Lung Association in California Chairwoman Marsha Ramos. "Our state elected officials have an opportunity to change course in 2013 and make big strides in the fight to end tobacco-caused death and disease. It’s going to take a great deal of political will, but we are confident our elected officials are up to the challenge. Our children’s health is depending on them."

Santa Clara County State of Tobacco Control 2013 Overall Grade Smokefree Outdoor Air Smokefree Housing Reducing Sales of Tobacco Prodcuts Campbell B A F B Cupertino F D F F Gilroy F D F F Los Altos F D F F Los Altos Hills F F F n/a Los Gatos F D F F Milpitas F D F F Mountain View D C F D Palo Alto D C F F Saratoga D D F D

To view the complete California report, visit www.lung.org/california.

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Norm Goldblatt January 18, 2013 at 03:31 PM
What? They don't grade on a curve?
Claudia Cruz January 18, 2013 at 06:15 PM
Hee, hee. If that were the case, MV would be right up there with Campbell, huh? Do you think that the city should ban smoking in housing?
Jeffrey Bottaro January 18, 2013 at 08:49 PM
We are collectively exploring the boundaries between society and the individual. At what point does a discourtesy and minor (second hand smoke is not gamma radiation) health issue BECOME A MATTER OF LEGISLATIVE JURISDICTION?
Claudia Cruz January 18, 2013 at 08:59 PM
@Jeffrey: Some people would argue that it's not a minor health issue, especially for individuals who need oxygen tanks to help them breathe. But to your point, when does government policy go to far? Can they legislate what type of detergent one uses at home because it can contaminate the water? What did you think about the smoking ban in restaurant/bar patios?
Jeanne Sanders January 18, 2013 at 11:17 PM
I do not smoke, but I still have to question all this legislation into a product that is LEGAL. The state of Ca. collects 87 cents off every pack of cigarettes sold.....so do city's that tell retailers they can not sell tobacco products refuse the funds from the state ? As for smoking in your own home...once again , way to much city council decissions being made for us......As for the smoking ban down town, I have been down town the last two Saturday nights and it was dead....have to wonder if the nightlife people are taking their cash elsewhere.....guess you could ask the business owners.

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