Statewide Tobacco Compliance Checks
SYNAR Fact Sheet

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As part of the Nebraska comprehensive tobacco cessation and merchant education process the state checks to see if youth under 18 can buy tobacco products. Below is a table showing the rate of sales to minors since 1995. Nebraska has dropped below 20 percent sales rate to minors in checks conducted by the Nebraska State Patrol and local Peace Officers. The goal is to have a violation rate across the state of less than 10 percent.

Checks are conducted throughout the year and summarized into regional and statewide rates.

Summary of Troop Area Non Compliance Rates for Nebraska 1995 to 2007

Troop Area Headquarters Troop A Troop B Troop C Troop D Troop E Statewide
Omaha Non Omaha
2010 10.6 7.3 6.8 8.5 13.8 20.0 10.3 10.7
2009 15.6 6.1 20.3 13.5 11.7 19.3 15.4 13.5
2008 8.7 5.1 8.5 10.8 22.1 25.3 10.0 12.2
2007 13.6 3.0 8.1 5.8 14.5 25.2 16.1 11.5
2006 18.7 7.6 20.9 4.7 13.9 31.7 12.7 14.7
2005  14.1 11.2 4.5 15.2  8.5 7.6 10.7
2004 16.0 16.3 2.5 21.2 21.0 21.7 16.0
2003 19.0 10.7 9.2 22.4 18.8 19.2 15.8
2002 27.5 13.6 5.1 29.8 23.0 19.3 18.6
2001 28.2 13.8 6.3 22.2 26.5 23.7 18.8
2000 26.4 4.4 12.6 15.9 19.0 21.1 14.8
1999 28.1 16.8 15.4 35.7 23.6 27.1 23.1
1998 25.6 21.8 12.2 28.3 23.8 41.7 23.8
1997 20.1 20.1 17.9 29.2 21.5 41.5 24.3
1996 26.2 29.0 29.5 25.0 58.0 42.5 32.2
1995 65.5 54.5 28.6 32.0 75.0 18.6 42.9


During the first three quarters of 2010 the Cooperating Individuals ( individuals between 15 and 17 years of age), and peace officers conducted compliance checks at nearly 450 retailers in the state.  The table below summarizes the results of the compliance checks and the 46 retailers who sold to the cooperating individual.  Compliance checks used for this study are conducted in a strict statewide random sampling procedure.  Your local community coalition may be working to conduct checks, and retailer education in your community.

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Nebraska 2010 SYNAR Checks

Troop Area Percent of State's under 18 Population Estimated Outlet Population Number of Sampled Outlets Number of Violations Retail Violation Percent
Area A - Non Omaha 35.7 890 44 3 6.8
Area A - Omaha 1915 82 6 7.3
Area B 16.5 1544 71 6 8.5
Area C 12.6 1414 65 9 13.8
Area D 6.3 1018 45 9 20.0
Area E 5.2 635 29 3 10.3
HeadQuarters 23.7 2153 97 10 10.6
State 100
438 46 10.7

COMPLIANCE CHECK PROCEDURES

The Nebraska State Patrol goes out and checks for tobacco sales to minors. A PDFstandard protocol is used. Cooperating individuals (persons under age for product purchases) sign PDFan agreement. A standard PDFreporting form is used. These standards are used by all law enforcement agencies in the state to conduct tobacco checks.  Checks are made by staff of each of the Nebraska State Patorl troop areas ( Map)

If Nebraska fails to meet its non-compliance targets it could be penalized up to 40% of our state substance abuse prevention and treatment block grant.

PDF  Entities issued citations in the 20082009, 2010 and 2011 compliance check. 

SYNAR Reports:

Complete SYNAR reports are available as part of the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant application for application year Complete SYNAR reports are available as part of the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant application for application year  PDF  FFY 2011 (November 2010)  PDF  FFY 2010 (November 2009),  PDF  FFY 2009   (November 2008) that summarize activities of compliance checks ending in September.

Every three to four years the Division undertakes a survey to review the completeness of the commercial list service used to draw the sample for compliance checks. In 2010 the PDF  Sampling Frame Coverage study found the list to be 95 % accurate. 

Nebraska Tobacco Laws:

Nebraska has an array of tobacco laws including laws related to indoor smoking, underage possession, and licensure.  These laws are summarized at: http://www.neded.org/files/assist/tobaclic.html

Nebraska Tobacco Licensing:

Municipal and county clerks responded to January 2010 request for tobacco licensing information

Annually the Division of Behavioral Health conducts a survey of the county and municipal clerks to obtain retail licensee holders names and address.  This information is combined with a commercial list to obtain a sample to be used to conduct compliance checks.  The list of licensees is available by contacting the Division.   In January 2011,  93 of 93 county clerks responded to the Division's request and all but 126 of 531 municipal clerks responded -  PDF2011 Map shows the distribution of the clerks responding and whether the entity has tobacco licensees.

For more information, contact:
Robert Bussard, Program Specialist
(Robert.Bussard@Nebraska.Gov)
Division of Behavioral Health     
P.O. Box 95026
Lincoln, NE 68509-5026
Phone: (402) 471-7821

Page last updated:  09/01/2011


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