Synar Program


Underage Tobacco Use in Nevada

Among Nevada high school students, 12% have reported using a tobacco product, and 43% have reported using E-vapor products. Among Nevada middle school students, 19% reported using E-vapor products in 2017. 

Source: Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Agency 2018 Epidemiologic Profile, November 2018

It is anticipated that the numbers of Nevada youth who use tobacco will increase in step with a nationwide epidemic. According to results from the National Youth Tobacco Survey, in 2018 over 3.6 million youth used e-cigs, making them the most commonly used tobacco product. The results of the survey show that there were alarming increases in current use of any tobacco product among both middle and high school students between 2017 and 2018 primarily because of an increase in e-cigarette use.

    About the Synar Program

    In July 1992, Congress enacted the Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration Reorganization Act (PL 102-321), which includes an amendment (section 1926) aimed at decreasing youth access to tobacco. This amendment, named for its sponsor, Congressman Mike Synar of Oklahoma, requires states (that is, all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and six Pacific jurisdictions) to enact and enforce laws prohibiting the sale or distribution of tobacco products to individuals under the age of 18. For more information regarding the Synar regulation, refer to the Tobacco Regulation for Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant – Final Rule – 1996 (PDF | 260 KB).

    Nevada must comply with the Synar Amendment and show a retail violation rate of under 20% in order to receive the full Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant awards.

    The Bureau of Behavioral Health Wellness and Prevention complies with the Synar amendment by implementing regulation: to enact and enforce laws, conduct inspections and report findings. This includes conducting random, unannounced inspections of tobacco outlets and report the annual Synar survey findings to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services by December 31 of each year. 

    The Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant is used to fund Synar programs for development of sample design, costs to conduct inspections, costs to train and pay inspectors, travel costs, and other Synar related items such as merchant education and community education. 

    Enforcement is funded through the Fund for Healthy Nevada, derived from the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement and enforced through the Office of the Nevada Attorney General, tobacco Enforcement Unit. 

      Merchant Education

      The Nevada Responsible Tobacco Sales Training is a collaborative initiative between the State of Nevada’s Tobacco Control Program, the bureau of Behavioral Health Wellness and Prevention, local health authorities, and community coalitions. This partnership facilitates projects t address youth tobacco use by preventing the sale of tobacco to minors within the State of Nevada with a merchant education toll as a primary focus. The merchant education tool is offered free of charge and may be found on the Responsible Tobacco Nevada website:https://responsibletobacconv.com/

      The Federal Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, also provides regulation of tobacco products, and enforces the Tobacco Control Act by giving industry education and training, monitoring industry’s compliance with the law, and taking actin when necessary. Moer information may be found on the FDA website: https://www.fda.gov/TobaccoProducts/default.htm

        Synar Reports

        Send Public Comments

        Members of the public who wish to comment on the Annual Synar Report may do so by filling out the form here.