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Senators Call for End Military Tobacco Discounts

Military.com reports that “Two senators on Wednesday called on the Defense Department to eliminate discounts on tobacco sales throughout the military as a cost-cutting measure in an era of tight budgets.”  

“‘That’s something that needs to go,’ Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, told Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Gen. Martin Dempsey at a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee on the Fiscal Year 2015 military budget.”  

“Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, the committee’s chairman, said the Defense Department spends $1.6 billion annually on tobacco-related problems.
Durbin said that discounts at military facilities were a factor in troops smoking at a rate 20 percent higher than civilians. Durbin said military personnel use smokeless tobacco at a rate 400 percent higher than civilians.”