The Journal Gazette
Wednesday, September 08, 2021 9:20 pm

Rokita thanks New Haven for not opting out

NIKI KELLY | The Journal Gazette

Attorney General Todd Rokita attended the New Haven City Council meeting this week to thank Mayor Steve McMichael and council members for opting into the state’s settlement with three major pharmaceutical distributors and a manufacturer/marketer of opioids.

"The real beneficiaries of this decision will be the residents of New Haven," Rokita said. "The state settlement will bring a significant amount of money directly to impacted communities in Indiana to support programs to help those struggling with addiction."

The Office of the Attorney General worked with elected members of the Indiana General Assembly to create a statutory structure that will distribute this funding right to local communities. The funds will support local law enforcement efforts, drug task forces, regional treatment hubs, and early intervention and crisis support, among other important programs.

Indiana’s share of the $26 billion national settlement is $508 million. At least 70% of the total will be used for opioid abatement efforts in local communities. The majority of Indiana communities — more than 580 — elected to join the state’s settlement.

"I remain concerned that some communities around the state have lost out because private attorneys from large national firms persuaded them not to participate in the state settlement," he said. "Too many of those lawyers were more interested in collecting large fees representing local governments in go-it-alone lawsuits than doing what is truly in Hoosiers’ best interests."

Fort Wayne and Allen County, both of whom have Republican majorities, have opted out.

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