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 number 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 survey results show that there were alarming increases in the 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% 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 regulations: to enact and enforce laws, conduct inspections and report findings. This includes conducting random, unannounced inspections of tobacco outlets and reporting 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 the 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 to address youth tobacco use by preventing the sale of tobacco to minors within the State of Nevada with a merchant education tool as a primary focus. The merchant education tool is offered free of charge and may be found on the Responsible Tobacco Nevada website:

      The Federal Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, also regulates tobacco products and enforces the Tobacco Control Act by giving industry education and training, monitoring the industry’s compliance with the law, and taking action when necessary. More information may be found on the FDA website:

        Synar Reports

        Nevada’s Annual Synar Report for FFY 2023

         Nevada 2023 Annual Synar Report (ASR): 

        The Division of Public and Behavioral Health (DPBH); Bureau of Behavioral Health Wellness and Prevention (BBHWP) team submits the Annual Synar Report (ASR) to SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Agency), to report the progress on Nevada’s Synar outcome and goals identified in our prior year overall objectives and report statewide agency/programmatic expenditures. The Nevada Annual Synar Report is reflective of retailer tobacco sales to minors.

        Nevada has provided the following steps for you as a citizen and possible recipient of these funds. We ask for you to follow the steps below, review the 2023 Annual Synar Report, and provide feedback. The final date to submit feedback is 12/15/2022 in order to allow time for updates prior to submission on 12/31/2022. The Annual Synar Report FFY 2023 covers the period of 10/01/2021 – 09/30/2022. The steps below will allow you access as a citizen to review and provide feedback to BBHWP.

          • Open the link:
          • Use the log-in information:
            • Username: citizennv
            • Password: citizen
          • Once logged in, click the tab “Existing Applications” at the top of the page
          • Click on the “2023 Annual Synar Report”.
          • There will be an option to “View Application” next to the page title. Click to open the 2023 Annual Synar Report.
          • Click on “Synar”
          • Open (NV) FFY 2023 – Annual Synar Report Draft v1.docx
          • From there you can access all tables and reports.

        The BBHWP website link:   

        Please submit your comments or questions to Sarah Motts via email: