Hefty cigarette taxes cut smoking big-time. But there’s a downside for children


California voters eked out a win for children more than two decades ago based on a “sin tax.” Proposition 10 slapped cigarettes with a hefty surcharge to pressure smokers to give up their habit and used the money to improve the health and well-being of young children and their families.

It worked.

When the measure passed in 1998, about 1.5 billion packs of cigarettes were sold and taxed annually in California. By 2022, sales were down to fewer than 550 million packs.

The downside is the inherent paradox baked into the financing of the measure. The less people smoked over time, the less money was available for early childhood programs.

Read the full article from the Los Angeles Times


A refundable state earned income tax credit (EITC) of at least 10 percent of the federal credit is one of 12 evidence-based policies included in our 2023 Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap, which details states’ progress
Cynthia Osborne discusses the work of the Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center, which focuses on building the evidence base for effective state policies to improve outcomes for infants, toddlers, and their families. Read the full article
Vanderbilt University’s Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center (PN-3) just issued its annual State Policy Roadmap, exploring ways that the states (and D.C.) can improve conditions so infants and toddlers can thrive. The Roadmap focuses on 12 solutions shown