Raleigh County Commission approves agreement to receive opioid settlement funds

The Raleigh County Commission signed off on an agreement on Tuesday to receive its share of the...
The Raleigh County Commission signed off on an agreement on Tuesday to receive its share of the settlement funds.(wvva)
Published: Jun. 16, 2022 at 9:31 AM EDT
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BECKLEY, W.Va. (WVVA) - West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced in May a 26 million dollar settlement against the drug maker Endo Health Solutions for its role in fueling the state’s opioid epidemic.

On Tuesday, Raleigh County Commission signed off on an agreement to receive its share of the settlement funds.

According to the attorney who helped secure the settlement, Chris Davis, the money will go directly back into fighting the drug problems that companies such as Endo Health Solutions helped create.

“We believe Raleigh County will receive close to a million dollars with respect to the 26 million dollar settlement. Those numbers are undetermined at this time, but those are the numbers we have calculated to the best of our ability.”

But those settlement funds are just the start of a whole lot more money that could be coming the region’s way, he explained. The Raleigh County Commission also signed a memorandum of understanding on Tuesday that will allow the county to join a statewide coalition seeking settlements against other manufacturers.

“That’s a document in which the entirety of the state, whether it be counties or cities, come together through strength in numbers to approach a possible settlement in the opioid crisis an litigation,” explained Davis.

According to Bill Roop, the county’s attorney, “there’s a percentage then given to each region. And we’re the largest county in that region.”

Once those settlements are reached, Davis said that funding mechanism is also designed to help communities address the wreckage left behind by big pharma.

“It does provide benefit to all people involved, the counties and local governments. It creates a statewide abatement program to address the problems we suffer from across the state. But it also gives some relief, percentage wise, to local governments so they can receive those funds sooner rather than later to address things like the jail bill, ect.”

The initial effort to seek damages from the companies was brought by the commission and Raleigh County Sheriff’s Dept.

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