previous sub-section
The End of Acquiescence
next section

Conclusion

By 1994, there was no question that Proposition 99 had succeeded in achieving the goal its framers had in mind: to create a large anti-tobacco education and research program that would accelerate the decline in tobacco consumption in California. Through the end of fiscal year 1993-1994, the Proposition 99 programs (combined with the impact of the price increase that accompanied the tax) had roughly tripled the rate of decline in cigarette consumption in California and prevented about 1.6 billion packs of cigarettes from being smoked, worth about $2 billion in pre-tax sales to the tobacco industry.

Over this period of time, however, the Legislature and the governor had diverted a total of $301 million out of the anti-tobacco programs, about 34 percent of the total that the voters had set aside for these activities. Assuming a proportional drop in program effectiveness, these diversions probably resulted in an additional 530 million packs of cigarettes being consumed, worth about $800 million to the tobacco industry. Viewed from this perspective, the $23 million that the industry spent on campaign contributions and lobbying between 1988 and 1994 yielded a good return on investment.[56][58]

Until 1994, full funding of anti-tobacco education had been withheld with the consent of the agencies who were responsible for lobbying for the Health Education and Research programs—ALA, ACS, AHA. The passage of AB 816, however, was different; it passed despite the strenuous objections of the three organizations. While the confrontation over the diversions in AB 816 did not put an end to them, the dispute did achieve two other objectives. It began to engage the media and the public, and it set the stage for a legal test of the diversions.


previous sub-section
The End of Acquiescence
next section