Some States Could Tax Biden’s Student Loan Debt Relief

Some states tax forgiven debt as income, which means borrowers who are still paying down student loans could owe taxes on money taken off their bill.

President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan could lift crushing debt burdens from millions of borrowers, but the tax man may demand a cut of the relief in some states.

That’s because some states tax forgiven debt as income, which means borrowers who are still paying down student loans could owe taxes on as much as $10,000 or even $20,000 that was taken off their bill. In Mississippi, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Arkansas and North Carolina, forgiven student loans will be subject to state income taxes unless they change their laws to conform with a federal tax exemption for student loans, according to a tally by the Tax Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank.

That dismays Cathy Newman, a Louisiana State University graduate who just took a job teaching freshman biology at the University of Southern Mississippi in Hattiesburg. She figures she could end up owing a few hundred dollars of money that she could have kept had she stayed in Louisiana.

Newman said she can come up with the cash because she has a good job, but she knows of a lot of other borrowers who will still be stuck in difficult financial positions even with their loans forgiven.

“If they stay in the state, they could end up with a pretty hefty tax burden if things don’t change,” Newman said. “I won’t be happy if I have to do it. I can do it. But a lot of people can’t.”

More than 40 million Americans could see their student loan debt cut or eliminated under the forgiveness plan President Biden announced late last month. The president is erasing $10,000 in federal student loan debt for individuals with incomes below $125,000 a year, or households that earn less than $250,000. He’s canceling an additional $10,000 for those who also used federal Pell Grants to pay for college. But it only applies to those whose loans were paid out before July 1, which leaves out current high school seniors and students who will follow them.

Although having $10,000 or $20,000 in loan payments eliminated will be a boon over the long term to borrowers who qualify, those in the affected states might be required to declare that as income. Depending on a state’s tax rates, the taxpayer’s other income and the deductions and exemptions they’re able to claim, that could add up to several hundred extra tax dollars that they’ll owe.

Spokespeople for tax agencies in several states — including Virginia, Idaho, New York, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Kentucky — told The Associated Press that their states definitely won’t tax student loans forgiven under President Biden’s program. Revenue officials in a few other states said they needed to do more research to know.

Newman, 38, went into debt to pay for graduate school. She had already set herself up for relief under the federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, though that requires five more years of teaching on top of the five she already taught at the University of Louisiana Monroe. President Biden’s program would cut $10,000 off her debt load when it takes effect, but under existing Mississippi tax law, the relief won’t come free.

“It’s not a huge burden for me, but it could be for a lot of other people, which is what I’m worried about, especially if it’s unexpected, and I think a lot of people don’t realize that,” Newman said.

Any relief in states that would tax the forgiven debt would have to come from their Legislatures. Leaders of the Minnesota Legislature and Democratic Gov. Tim Walz have indicated in recent media interviews that there’s broad support for a fix, which could come during the 2023 session, or even earlier on the remote chance of a special session.

In Wisconsin, Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ administration plans to propose a fix in the state budget next year, but that would have to be approved by the Republican-controlled Legislature. And Evers needs to get reelected in November before he can formally make that request. Republican legislative leaders and Evers’ GOP challenger, Tim Michels, did not reply to messages seeking comment on the student loan tax issue.

However, in Mississippi, the chairman of the state Senate committee in charge of taxes said he’s willing to take a look when the Legislature convenes next year. Republican state Sen. Josh Harkins, of Brandon, said he needs to learn more about what his state’s tax laws say on debt forgiveness.

“I’m sure people will want to look at adjusting that or making some changes in the law, but a lot of factors have to be considered,” Harkins said, noting that Mississippi enacted its biggest-ever tax cut earlier this year and adding that he wants to gauge the impact of inflation before making big tax policy decisions. “This all just hit in the last week.”

Additional reporting by the Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Fort Smith Imparts The History Of The Five Tribes’ Treacherous Journey

By Allison Herrera
August 29, 2022

Fort Smith National Historic Site was the Five Tribes’ final stop before what’s now Oklahoma, but some groups are erasing its history from schools.

When Catherine Gray was in school studying history — something she loves — she always thought she would end up in a classroom teaching the subject.

She never thought she would end up a park ranger at the Fort Smith Historic site, in Fort Smith, Arkansas.

“There’s so much to the history of Fort Smith: the city itself, but then also how it relates to Indian territory and all of that history,” Gray said.

This historic site is known for a number of reasons: its place in Civil War history, the deputy marshals and it being federal court for the Western District of Arkansas at one time.

But what really brought about its fame was the fact that it was the basis for Charles Portis’ classic novel “True Grit,” with colorful stories of outlaws and rangers.

But there’s another piece of history it holds that few people know about: its Indigenous history. It was one of the last stops on the Trail of Tears before heading into Indian Territory, also known as present day Oklahoma.

“People would come here; they couldn’t even pronounce Cherokee,” Gray said. “They would say, ‘Who are the Cherokee?’ or ‘What is the Trail of Tears?’ This is one of the few spots on of all the trails that all five tribes, what we call the five civilized tribes, were removed through.”

Thousands of people who had been forcibly removed from their homelands in Georgia and Alabama went along the banks of the Poteau and Arkansas Rivers to establish new governments and begin again.

“When this was built in 1817… this is the farthest part of the United States at this point,” Gray said while at the Fort Smith National Historic Site where the two rivers converge. “So you have the Cherokee who are moving in to this area, but you’ve also got the Osage here. This is their homelands right here, so there was a lot of conflict early on in the early 1800s. That’s why this fort was established in the first place in 1817.”

All five tribes — the Cherokee, the Choctaw, Muskogee Creek, Seminole, Chickasaw — all came through on the water route.  

“The river was actually one of the harder journeys,” Gray said. “Speaking on behalf of Cherokee Nation, some of those early detachments that went out, the ones on the river, there was so much sickness and death on them that… we petition to be able to oversee our own removal.”

Once Gray learned more about Fort Smith, she found a family connection. She learned that she had numerous tribal lawmen in her family, including one involved in a famous murder trial where they called a dog as a witness.

“I ran across my great, great grandfather’s name as one of the ones involved with the murder of a deputy marshal, William Irwin,” Gray said.

Gray now works for the Cherokee Nation in their historic preservation office. She wants more people to learn about all of Fort Smith’s history and how unique it is.

“Oklahoma currently is home to 39 federally recognized tribes,” Gray said. “We all have our unique histories and cultures, and for the five tribes and specifically the Cherokees that I that I can speak for, we had established our own government, we had our own constitution, our own newspaper schools, all of this.”

Gray thinks it’s important for everyone who comes to Fort Smith to know these stories and is aware of all the scrutiny about what history is taught, and from whose perspective it is taught from.

Source: newsy.com

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Police Video Of Fatal Encounter Shows Lack Of De-Escalation

Activists are asking why an unarmed person wound up dead, and are accusing police of using disproportionate force.

A caller to 911 in Salt Lake City said a man had come into a brewery in his underwear, tried to steal beer and was running around in the street, posing a danger to himself and to drivers. Police tried to detain the man. Soon, Nykon Brandon was dead.

After the Salt Lake City Police Department on Friday released body-camera footage of the Aug. 14 fatal encounter and the 911 recording, activists on Saturday were asking why an unarmed person wound up dead and were accusing police of using disproportionate force.

“Stealing a beer does not equate to the death penalty,” said Lex Scott, founder of Black Lives Matter-Utah. “I don’t care if this man robbed 10 banks in one day. He didn’t deserve to die. He deserved to make it to court.”

The death of Brandon, who was 35, comes as the United States is still seeing uncounted numbers of police killings of unarmed people, many of whom were suffering a mental health crisis. Activists have called for reforms, saying rather than armed police who can often escalate situations, a better solution would be for special mental health crisis teams to respond.

Brandon’s Facebook page says he’d attended Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and worked for a firm that sells appliances, plumbing and hardware. Many people who posted on his page expressed shock and grief over his death.

The 911 caller said a man had come to Fisher Brewing, attacked a person at the door and was “running around crazy. Very erratic. He just jumped in and out of the road.”

“Definitely mental health issues,” the caller said. “So if you’ve got mental health resources, send them out.”

Instead, bodycam footage shows a police officer get out of his patrol car and order Brandon to stop. When he resists and puts up a fist and appears to reach for the officer’s holstered pistol, another officer pushes Brandon to the ground and the two officers try to pin him down. “Stop,” one of the officers says repeatedly as Brandon is on a gravel bed between the road and the sidewalk and continuing to push against the officers.

No de-escalation attempts by the police are visible or audible in the footage from nine body-worn cameras, even though an executive order signed by Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall two years ago requires all Salt Lake City Police Department officers to use de-escalation techniques before using force.

“De-escalation tactics are no longer suggested or preferred — they are mandatory prior to using force to effect an arrest unless it would be unreasonable to do so,” Mendenhall said in announcing the police reforms, which were prompted in part by the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police in 2020.

Salt Lake City Police Department spokesperson Brent Weisberg said of the Aug. 14 incident: “As the body-worn camera video shows, this is a situation that rapidly unfolded. It was a chaotic situation and our officers were required to make very fast decisions to get a situation under control that was very tense.”

Before Brandon walked into Fisher Brewing, he had been taken by South Salt Lake Police to a detox facility after they received a report of a man acting confused and scared at a park just after 1 p.m. on Aug. 14, KUTV reported.

Officers determined he was intoxicated, took him to the facility and cited him for public intoxication. But the facility is not a detention center and patients can leave at their will, KUTV reported.

The Salt Lake City Police Department officers encountered Brandon at 3:22 p.m. In the videos, he’s not heard speaking during his struggles with the officers, except for maybe a couple of words that are unclear.

A minute later, a third officer arrives. Video shows Brandon grabbing onto his holster and gun. They finally manage to cuff Brandon’s hands behind his back as he lies on the gravel belly down.

“We want to help you,” an officer says. “You’ve got to stop fighting with us.”

After a few seconds, Brandon stops moving. An officer taps Brandon on the shoulder with his gloved hand and asks “Can you hear me?” three times. Brandon does not respond.

“Get him in recovery,” an officer commands, and the others roll Brandon onto his side.

“Come on man,” an officer says. All the camera footage released by the police goes dark at that point.

Salt Lake City Police said in a press release that officers began to perform medical aid at 3:27 p.m. A minute later, they administered the first of multiple doses of Narcan and started performing chest compressions.

“At 4:16 p.m. SLCPD is notified that Mr. Brandon died. The exact time of death is unknown,” the news release said.

The police department said a thorough investigation was being conducted by an outside agency and that the department’s own internal affairs unit would conduct a separate investigation.

Rae Duckworth, operating chairperson for Black Lives Matter’s Utah chapters, wants to know why the released footage doesn’t show the officers trying to help Brandon.

“We don’t even have proof they actually administered aid. We don’t have proof that they actually administered Narcan,” Duckworth said.

Weisberg, the police spokesperson, said footage of the resuscitation efforts was not released out of consideration for Brandon’s family.

Additional reporting by the Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Multiple Agencies Are Investigating Police Beating Of Arkansas Man

Arkansas state police, the U.S. attorney and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice are investigating a police beating.

A graphic video showing Arkansas law enforcement beating a man in custody Sunday morning is now circulating online.

In the video, two deputies and an officer have a man pinned down outside a convenience store in Mulberry, Arkansas. One of the officers is seen repeatedly punching the man while the other officer uses his knee against him and the third holds the man down.

Arkansas state police say an investigation has been opened into the use of force by the two Crawford County sheriff’s deputies and the Mulberry police officer. On Monday, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchison said along with the state police, the U.S. attorney and the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice are also investigating.

The Crawford County sheriff’s office has identified the officers as Deputy Zack King, Deputy Levi White and Mulberry Officer Thell Riddle. All three men have been placed on suspension.

Arkansas state police say the man pinned down in the video has been identified as Randall Worcester of South Carolina.

The department says he was treated at an area hospital following his arrest before being taken to jail. Worcester is being charged with second degree battery, resisting arrest, and terroristic threatening among other charges. He is currently out on bond.

The sheriff’s department told KFSM-TV that Worcester had spit on an employee at a convenience store in nearby Alma, Arkansas and had threatened to “cut off their face.” After bicycling about 10 miles to Mulberry, he was confronted by law enforcement and allegedly attacked one of the deputies.

On Monday, Crawford County Sheriff Jimmy Damante told reporters that while his department condemns violence against civilians, he said a dash cam from one of the police cars ”does bring to light some other things that happened here.” 

In a statement, Mulberry Mayor Gary Baxter says he was shocked and sickened by the video, adding that any actions necessary will be taken to ensure this never happens again.

Source: newsy.com

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3 Arkansas Officers Suspended After Video Captures Beating

By Associated Press
August 22, 2022

Two state deputies and a Mulberry police officer were put on suspension after the incident.

Three Arkansas law enforcement officers were suspended Sunday following social media outrage over a video that shows a suspect being held down on the ground and beaten.

Crawford County Sheriff Jimmy Damante issued a statement Sunday evening, stating two county deputies will be suspended during the course of the Arkansas state police’s investigation into the incident and the sheriff’s office’s internal investigation. A Mulberry police officer also was suspended.

“I hold all my employees accountable for their actions and will take appropriate measures in this matter,” Damante said.

In a statement released Sunday evening, Mulberry Police Chief Shannon Gregory said the officer involved in the incident is on leave pending the outcome of the investigation.

“The city of Mulberry and the Mulberry police department takes these investigations very seriously,” Gregory said.

According to police, a report indicated that a man was making threats to a convenience store employee in Mulberry on Sunday morning. Mulberry is located about 137 miles northwest of Little Rock.

Police said when the officers confronted the man, he pushed a deputy to the ground and punched the back of his head, leading to the arrest seen in the video.

Three law enforcement officers are seen in the video. One can be seen punching the shoeless suspect with a clenched fist, while another can be seen kneeing him, and a third is holding him down.

The unidentified man was arrested and taken to a local hospital. He faces charges of terroristic threatening, resisting arrest and other assault charges, police said.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Sunday night on Twitter that the “incident in Crawford County will be investigated pursuant to the video evidence and the request of the prosecuting attorney.”

No further information was immediately available.

Additional reporting by the Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Iran Deal Tantalizingly Close, But U.S. Faces New Hurdles

The Biden administration faces new and potentially insurmountable domestic political hurdles to forging a lasting agreement.

Last week’s attack on author Salman Rushdie and the indictment of an Iranian national in a plot to kill former national security adviser John Bolton have given the Biden administration new headaches as it attempts to negotiate a return to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.

A resolution may be tantalizingly close. But as the U.S. and Europe weigh Iran’s latest response to an EU proposal described as the West’s final offer, the administration faces new and potentially insurmountable domestic political hurdles to forging a lasting agreement.

Deal critics in Congress who have long vowed to blow up any pact have ratcheted up their opposition to negotiations with a country whose leadership has refused to rescind the death threats against Rushdie or Bolton. Iran also vows to avenge the Trump administration’s 2020 assassination of a top Iranian general by killing former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Iran envoy Brian Hook, both of whom remain under 24/7 taxpayer-paid security protection.

Although such threats are not covered by the deal, which relates solely to Iran’s nuclear program, they underscore deal opponents’ arguments that Iran cannot be trusted with the billions of dollars in sanctions relief it will receive if and when it and the U.S. return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, a signature foreign policy accomplishment of the Obama administration that President Donald Trump withdrew from in 2018.

“This is a tougher deal to sell than the 2015 deal in that this time around there are no illusions that it will serve to moderate Iranian behavior or lead to greater U.S.-Iran cooperation,” said Karim Sadjadpour, an Iran expert at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

“The Iranian government stands to get tens of billions in sanctions relief, and the organizing principle of the regime will continue to be opposition to the United States and violence against its critics, both at home and abroad,” he said.

Iran has denied any link with Rushdie’s alleged attacker, an American citizen who was indicted for attempted murder and has pleaded not guilty in the Aug. 12 stabbing at a literary event in Western New York. But Iranian state media have celebrated Iran’s long-standing antipathy toward Rushdie since the 1988 publication of his book “The Satanic Verses,” which some believe is insulting to Islam.

Media linked to Iran’s leadership have lauded the attacker for following through on a 1989 decree, or fatwa, calling for Rushdie to be killed that was signed by Iran’s then-Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

And the man who was charged with plotting to murder Bolton is a member of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. The Justice Department alleges the IRGC tried to pay $300,000 to people in the United States to avenge the death of Qassam Suleimani, the head of its elite Quds Force who was killed by a U.S. airstrike in Iraq in 2020.

“I think it’s delusional to believe that a regime that you’re about to enter into a significant arms control agreement with can be depended on to comply with its obligations or is even serious about the negotiation when it’s plotting the assassination of high-level former government officials and current government officials,” Bolton told reporters Wednesday.

“It certainly looks like the attack on Salman Rushdie had a Revolutionary Guard component,” Bolton said. “We’ve got to stop this artificial division when dealing with the government of Iran between its nuclear activities on the one hand and its terrorist activities on the other.”

Others agree.

“Granting terrorism sanctions relief amid ongoing terror plots on U.S. soil is somewhere between outrageous and lunacy,” said Rich Goldberg, a former Trump administration national security council staffer and longtime deal critic who is now a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, which has also lobbied against a return to the JCPOA.

While acknowledging the seriousness of the plots, administration officials contend that they are unrelated to the nuclear issue and do nothing to change their long-held belief that an Iran with a nuclear weapon would be more dangerous and less constrained than an Iran without one.

“The JCPOA is about the single, central challenge we face with Iran, the core challenge, what would be the most threatening challenge we could possibly face from Iran, and that is a nuclear weapon,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said this week. “There is no doubt that a nuclear-armed Iran would feel an even greater degree of impunity, and would pose an even greater threat, a far greater threat, to countries in the region and potentially well beyond.”

“Every challenge we face with Iran, whether it is its support for proxies, its support for terrorist groups, its ballistic missiles program, its malign cyber activities — every single one of those — would be more difficult to confront were Iran to have a nuclear weapons program,” he said.

That argument, however, will be challenged in Congress by lawmakers who opposed the 2015 deal, saying it gave Iran a path to develop nuclear weapons by time-limiting the most onerous restrictions on its nuclear activities. They say there’s now even more tangible evidence that Iran’s malign behavior make it impossible to deal with.

Two of the most outspoken critics of the deal, Republican senators Ted Cruz of Texas and Tom Cotton of Arkansas, have weighed in on what the Rushdie attack should mean for the administration.

“The ayatollahs have been trying to murder Salman Rushdie for decades,” Cruz said. “Their incitement and their contacts with this terrorist resulted in an attack. This vicious terrorist attack needs to be completely condemned. The Biden administration must finally cease appeasing the Iranian regime.”

“Iran’s leaders have been calling for the murder of Salman Rushdie for decades,” said Cotton. “We know they’re trying to assassinate American officials today. Biden needs to immediately end negotiations with this terrorist regime.”

Under the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act, or INARA, the administration must submit any agreement with Iran for congressional review within five days of it being sealed. That begins a 30-day review period during which lawmakers may weigh in and no sanctions relief can be offered.

That timeline means that even if a deal is reached within the next week, the administration will not be able to start moving on sanctions relief until the end of September, just a month from crucial congressional midterm elections. And, it will take additional time for Iran to begin seeing the benefits of such relief because of logistical constraints.

While deal critics in the current Congress are unlikely to be able to kill a deal, if Republicans win back control of Congress in the midterms, they may be able to nullify any sanctions relief.

“Even if Iran accepts President Biden’s full capitulation and agrees to reenter the Iran nuclear deal, Congress will never vote to remove sanctions,” the GOP minority on the House Armed Services Committee said in a tweet on Wednesday. “In fact, Republicans in Congress will work to strengthen sanctions against Iran.”

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Walmart, Walgreens, CVS Ordered To Pay $650M To Rectify Opioid Abuse

This trial was part of a broader constellation of about 3,000 federal opioid lawsuits.

A federal judge in Cleveland awarded $650 million in damages Wednesday to two Ohio counties that sued CVS, Walgreens and Walmart over the way the national pharmacy chains distributed opioids to their communities.

U.S. District Judge Dan Polster said in his ruling that the money will be used to fight the opioid crisis in Lake and Trumbull counties outside Cleveland. Attorneys for the counties put the total price tag at $3.3 billion for the damage done.

The judge admonished the three companies, saying they “squandered the opportunity to present a meaningful plan to abate the nuisance” after proceedings last spring to determine what the counties were owed.

Lake County is to receive $306 million over 15 years. Trumbull County is to receive $344 million over the same period. Polster ordered the companies to immediately fork over nearly $87 million to cover the first two years of payments, but it was unclear whether they had to pay that money during their appeals.

“Today marks the start of a new day in our fight to end the opioid epidemic,” Lake County Commissioner John Hamercheck said in a statement.

A jury in November returned a verdict in favor of the counties after a six-week trial. It was then left to the judge to decide how much the counties should receive. He heard testimony in May to determine damages.

The counties convinced the jury that the pharmacies played an outsized role in creating a public nuisance in the way they dispensed pain medication.

It was the first time pharmacy companies completed a trial to defend themselves in a drug crisis that has killed a half-million Americans since 1999.

The decision on damages came on the same day that attorneys general from numerous states announced they had reached an agreement with opioid maker Endo International to pay as much as $450 million over 10 years. The payments settle allegations the company used deceptive marketing practices “that downplayed the risk of addiction and overstated the benefits” of opioids.

Attorneys for the pharmacy chains insisted they had policies to stem the flow of pills when pharmacists voiced concerns and would notify authorities about suspicious orders from doctors. They also said it was doctors who controlled how many pills were prescribed for legitimate medical needs, not pharmacies.

Walmart issued a statement Wednesday saying the counties “sued Walmart in search of deep pockets, and this judgment follows a trial that was engineered to favor the plaintiffs’ attorneys and was riddled with remarkable legal and factual mistakes.”

Walgreens spokesperson Fraser Engerman said: “The facts and the law did not support the jury verdict last fall, and they do not support the court’s decision now.”

He said the court “committed significant legal errors in allowing the case to go before a jury on a flawed legal theory that is inconsistent with Ohio law and compounded those errors in reaching its ruling regarding damages.”

CVS spokesperson Michael DeAngelis said the company strongly disagreed with the court’s decision on damages as well as the underlying verdict.

CVS is based in Rhode Island, Walgreens in Illinois and Walmart in Arkansas.

Two chains — Rite Aid and Giant Eagle — settled lawsuits with the counties before trial. The amounts they paid have not been disclosed publicly.

Mark Lanier, an attorney for the counties, said during the trial that the pharmacies were attempting to blame everyone but themselves.

The opioid crisis has overwhelmed courts, social-service agencies and law enforcement in Ohio’s blue-collar corner east of Cleveland, leaving behind heartbroken families and babies born to addicted mothers, Lanier told jurors.

Roughly 80 million prescription painkillers were dispensed in Trumbull County alone between 2012 and 2016 — equivalent to 400 for every resident. In Lake County, some 61 million pills were distributed during that period.

Prescriptions for pain medications such as oxycodone and hydrocodone rose as medical groups began recognizing that patients have the right to be treated for pain, Kaspar Stoffelmayr, an attorney for Walgreens, said at the opening of the trial.

The problem, he said, was that “pharmaceutical manufacturers tricked doctors into writing way too many pills.”

The counties said pharmacies should be the last line of defense to prevent pills from getting into the wrong hands.

The trial was part of a broader constellation of about 3,000 federal opioid lawsuits consolidated under Polster’s supervision. Other cases are moving ahead in state courts.

Kevin Roy, chief public policy officer at Shatterproof, an organization that advocates for solutions to addiction, said in November that the verdict could lead pharmacies to follow the path of major distribution companies and some drugmakers that have reached nationwide settlements of opioid cases worth billions of dollars. So far, no pharmacy has reached a nationwide settlement.

The agreement with Ireland-based Endo calls for the $450 million to be divided between participating states and communities. It also calls for Endo to put opioid-related documents online for public viewing and pay $2.75 million in expenses to publicly archive those documents.

Endo can never again market opioids, according to the agreement. It filed Tuesday for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

The company, which has its U.S. headquarters in Malvern, Pennsylvania, did not respond Wednesday to telephone and email requests for comment about the agreement.

Endo produces generic opioids and name brands such as Percocet and Endocet. The company’s Opana ER opioid was withdrawn from the market in 2017.

The attorneys general say Endo “falsely promoted the benefits” of Opana ER’s “so-called abuse deterrent formulation.” The attorneys general said the formulation did not deter abuse of the drug and led to deadly outbreaks of hepatitis and HIV resulting from people injecting it.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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