Investing in our Children / Invirtiendo en Nuestros Niños

About Proposition 10

Current research shows that a child's experiences in the first years of life have a profound impact on educational, social and economic outcomes. To support children in their earliest years of development, voters passed a statewide ballot initiative called Proposition 10 in November of 1998.  

The initiative created a First 5 Commission in every California county and a statewide Commission, First 5 California. Prop 10 adds a 50-cent-per-pack tax on cigarettes, and generates approximately $500 million annually. The monies collected are used to fund education, health and child care programs that promote early childhood development, from prenatal to age five. Programs are funded at the county level to best meet local needs as determined by each county. The intent is for all California children to be healthy, to live in a healthy and supportive family environment and to enter school ready to learn.

All revenue generated by Prop. 10 is collected in the California Children and Families Trust Fund Account, set up within the State Treasury. 

  • Eighty percent of the approximately $500 million collected each year is allocated to community trust funds established by each County Commission. Allocations to each county are based on the number of births in the county. Before disbursing any fund locally, County Commissions develop strategic plans with public input. California parents, families and community groups are invited to participate in local forums and provide input on how the money should be spent to best meet local needs. 
  • Twenty percent of the revenues are allocated to the State Commission for statewide expenditures, including a public education campaign, educational materials and training, technical support for the local County Commissions, education and training of child care providers, and research and development. Only one percent is used for administrative functions of the State Commissions. 

The revenue generated from Prop. 10 will supplement the limited number of existing early childhood development programs.