ALBANY, N.Y. -- The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network is calling on state legislators to increase funding for the tobacco control program.
The network says thousands of New Yorkers die each year from smoking related cancer and that those deaths are preventable.
In the report, Cancer Brief: Tobacco Use and Cancer Deaths - The Preventable Epidemic, it finds funding for the state's tobacco control program has been cut in half since 2008.
Health officials say Governor Andrew Cuomo's budget proposal is lumping preventive health programs into one program.
"In each category, the governor slashes funding and he has an odd selection of programs together. For example, in ours, tobacco, Alzheimer and osteoporosis programs are all competition for the same money," said Blair Horner, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network of New York and New Jersey Vice President for Advocacy.
The report gave a number of recommendations, including using more revenue from tobacco sales on tobacco control. According to the report, the state brings in nearly $2.5 billion from tobacco sales each year.