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                     Office of the Press Secretary
                          (Norfolk, Virginia)
Embargoed until 4:00pm                            Thursday April 1, 1999


Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is publishing promising new results from the youth anti-smoking program launched by the late Florida Governor Lawton Chiles. The study shows that in just one year, smoking has declined by 19 percent among middle school students and by 8 percent among high schoolers. These results show why every state should have a comprehensive program to reduce youth smoking and why I oppose any legislation waiving the federal government's claim to tobacco settlement funds without making a commitment from the states to fund such efforts. Without such a commitment, states won't have to spend a single penny of the $246 billion settlement to reduce youth smoking. We must act now: every day, 3000 children become regular smokers and 1000 will have their lives cut short as a result.