The City of Palmdale has received an additional $361,243 in state funding to tackle the illegal sale of cigarettes and tobacco products to minors as part of the California Department of Justice’s Tobacco Grant Program. The grants were awarded to 76 local entities throughout the state to support the enforcement of state and local laws related to the illegal sales and marketing of tobacco products to minors.
The City will use the funding to continue its program. Since it began last year, the City’s efforts led to a noticed decline in tobacco-related violations. The funding provided for a partnership with the Palmdale Sheriff's Dept. to conduct inspections of tobacco retailers to ensure they were not selling to minors or making single cigarette sales. To help retailers better understand and keep in compliance, the City developed a Tobacco Retailers guide and established a No Smoking Weekly Park Patrol to keep City parks smoke free.
Education was also part of the grant funding, and the City ran an extensive anti-tobacco advertising campaign featuring billboards and online messaging to discourage tobacco use, especially among youth.