INTERNATIONAL NEWS: Comms agencies work together on anti-tobaccojob

BALTIMORE: A consortium of marketing agencies in the Mid-Atlantic

area was awarded a $14 million contract to develop a mass-media

tobacco cessation and prevention campaign. The 18-month contract has a

renewal option.



The group, Maryland Action Partnership, is headed by Baltimore ad agency

Gray/Kirk Vansant Advertising. Porter Novelli in Washington will handle

PR, Logicon/ROW will conduct research, and 21st Century Group will do

minority marketing.



According to J.B. Hanson of the Department of Mental Health and

Hygiene's (DMHH) PR department, the award is still subject to approval

by the state Board of Public Awards, and that the dollar figure may be

reduced. The campaign is expected to spend $3.9 million in the

first year, he added.



The percentage of the budget to be used for PR has not been

finalized.



Some of the programs MAP recommended include public service

announcements aimed at the teen market, beach and block parties,

community-based activities, and a smoke-free dorm initiative. All

recommendations are subject to approval by the DMHH.



Under the Master Settlement Agreement of 1998, Maryland was paid $54.3 million in 1998. Beginning in 2000, the state is scheduled to

receive between $144.9 million and $189.6 million.



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