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Report: Maine Slides in Rankings for Curbing Tobacco Use

AUGUSTA, Maine - Maine has slipped from being the first  - and only - state in the nation to achieve straight A's in an annual Lung Association tobacco control report to earning two D's. 

Ed Miller, senior vice president of public policy for the American Lung Association of the Northeast, says the latest report finds that Maine falls short in two areas: the cigarette tax, and spending on tobacco prevention and control.

"Maine is no longer one of those states in the nation that provides close to the funding level recommended by the federal Center for Disease Control to achieve maximum impact to reduce tobacco use," Miller said. "Our current level of support is just over half what the CDC recommends."

The annual report evaluates tobacco control policies at the federal and state level. Tobacco use kills almost half a million Americans and causes up to $333 billion in health care costs and lost productivity each year.