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Rutledge Announces Two Arkansans Sentenced for Medicaid Fraud

Rutledge Announces Two Arkansans Sentenced for Medicaid Fraud

Tue, Nov 29, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced the convictions of two Arkansans for Medicaid fraud.

Jennifer Casey, formerly of Benton County and currently of Pulaski County, pleaded guilty in Pulaski County Circuit Court in October and was recently sentenced to five years of probation and ordered to pay a $750 fine and court costs. She has already repaid $9,000 in restitution to the Medicaid Program Trust Fund.

Donna Roberson of Jefferson County pleaded guilty in Pulaski County Circuit Court. She has been sentenced to three years of probation and ordered to pay a $2,500 fine and court costs.

“Investigators and attorneys from the Attorney General’s office work tirelessly to investigate and prosecute those who commit Medicaid fraud,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Medicaid is an important safety net for some of the most vulnerable Arkansans. I will ensure that those people attempting to defraud Arkansans are held accountable.”

Casey, 36, lived in Rogers when she was charged with one count of Medicaid fraud, a Class B felony, and one count of failure to maintain medical records, a Class D felony, for submitting false documentation to the Arkansas Medicaid Program in 2014 after her senior adult day care facility, Christian Day Care in Conway closed its doors on Jan. 1, 2014.

Roberson, 64, of Pine Bluff, was charged with one count of Medicaid fraud, a Class C felony, for billing the Arkansas Medicaid Program for services that were not rendered.

Both cases were initiated by referrals from the Office of the Medicaid Inspector General and were prosecuted in coordination with the 6th Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Larry Jegley.

To report abuse or neglect in residential care facilities or Medicaid fraud, contact the Attorney General’s Medicaid fraud hotline at (866) 810-0016 or oag@arkansasag.gov.

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Overtime Rule Preliminary Injunction Granted

Rutledge Statement After Court Grants Preliminary Injunction Against Overtime Rule

Wed, Nov 23, 2016

Rutledge Statement After Court Grants Preliminary Injunction Against Overtime Rule

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November 23, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today released a statement after District Judge Amos L. Mazant granted the request of 21 states to enjoin the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) overtime rule.

“Today’s injunction is an important victory that will help protect countless Arkansas business owners, nonprofits, sheriffs, mayors and county judges from increased costs and forced layoffs,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Many across our State have expressed grave concerns about how they would continue to operate if the rule took effect next week. I am grateful to Judge Mazant for granting this important injunction until the full legality of the rule can be determined, and I hope the Department of Labor will ultimately reconsider this ill-advised rule.”

Rutledge joined a coalition of 21 states in filing a lawsuit challenging the rule. If implemented, the rule will likely force the State of Arkansas, local cities and counties and countless small businesses and nonprofits, to substantially increase their employment costs. Many entities may be forced to eliminate some services and fire employees because of the increased expenses.

On March 13, 2014, President Obama ordered the DOL to revise the Fair Labor Standards Act’s overtime exemption for executive, administrative and professional employees to account for the federal minimum wage. On May 23, the DOL issued the final new overtime rule, which doubles the salary-level threshold for employees to be exempt from overtime, regardless of whether they perform executive, administrative or professional duties.

Led by Nevada Attorney General Adam Paul Laxalt, Rutledge is joined on the complaint by attorneys general from Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin.

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Rutledge Requests Ten Percent Budget Reduction; Joint Budget Committee Approves

Wed, Nov 23, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge on Monday sent the biennial budget of the Attorney General’s office for fiscal years 2017-2019 to the Legislature for consideration and approval. The budget, which cuts spending 10 percent over the next biennium, was approved by the Joint Budget Committee.

“Since taking office, it has been a priority of mine to save taxpayer dollars and to do more with less, providing top-notch services through one-on-one conversations and the use of technology,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “This next biennium budget cuts waste and allows the office to better focus on serving the people of Arkansas in an efficient and responsible way. I appreciate the Legislature recognizing these important improvements and for quickly approving this budget.”

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Challenging EPA’s Regional Haze Plan

Rutledge Files Challenge to EPA’s Regional Haze Federal Implementation Plan for Arkansas

Tue, Nov 22, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today filed a challenge to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Federal Implementation Plan for regional haze in Arkansas.

“Imposing a federal directive that goes far beyond what is required and ignores the interest of the State has become the norm, not the exception for the EPA,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Instead of adopting the plan that Arkansas submitted to reasonably combat regional haze, the EPA chose to cater to the interest of liberal special interest groups, forcing on Arkansans a proposal that will cost millions and bring little positive impact. This plan will lead to unreasonable and unnecessary utility rate increases, something no Arkansan can afford, and I will not stand for it.”

Rutledge submitted comments to the EPA in July 2015. In the letter, she wrote, “The proposed Federal Implementation Plan has no basis in law or science and is a prime example of overreaching federal regulation in response to ‘sue and settle’ litigation brought by the Sierra Club. As such, the EPA should withdraw the proposed plan and consult with the State in developing an approvable State Implementation Plan.”

Instead of working with the State, the EPA published its proposed Federal Implementation Plan for Arkansas in April and solicited feedback. The Attorney General, Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality and a number of industries, institutions and facilities impacted by the proposed plan provided comments during this time. Despite the comments urging the EPA to withdraw the plan, the final plan was signed in August.

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December Mobile Office Locations

Rutledge Announces Mobile Office Locations for December

Mon, Nov 21, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced mobile office locations for December.

Attorney General Rutledge created the mobile office initiative to make the office accessible to everyone, particularly to those who live outside the capital city. Last year, office hours were held in all 75 counties, marking the first time that the Attorney General’s office has held office hours in each county across the State. Since January, 67 mobile offices have been held in an effort to once again travel to all 75 counties.

The Attorney General Mobile Offices assist constituents with consumer related issues in filing consumer complaints against scam artists. Staff will also be available to answer questions about the office and the other services it offers to constituents. Rutledge believes there is no issue too small for her staff to have a face-to-face conversation.

Rutledge expanded the services offered at mobile offices to include Prescription Drug Take Back boxes. Rutledge is partnering with local law enforcement agencies across the State who will handle a secure box and properly dispose of the prescriptions collected. Rutledge encourages Arkansans to bring their old, unused or expired prescription medications to an upcoming mobile office.

For more information about services provided by the Attorney General’s office, visit ArkansasAG.gov or call (501) 682-2007. Rutledge can also be found on Facebook at facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge and on Twitter at twitter.com/AGRutledge.

The upcoming mobile office schedule is below:

Nevada County

Thursday, Dec. 1

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Nevada County Senior Center – Prescott

419 E. Main St.

Prescott, AR 71857

Jackson County

Friday, Dec. 2

9:30 – 11 a.m.

Newport Senior Life Center

947 Haut Circle

Newport, AR 72112

Marion County

Monday, Dec. 5

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Marion County Senior Activity and Wellness Center

5966 Highway 202 E.

Flippin, AR 72634

Searcy County

Tuesday, Dec. 6

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Searcy County Senior Activity and Wellness Center

509 Zack Road

Marshall, AR 72650

Pulaski County

Wednesday, Dec. 7

Noon – 1:30 p.m.

Jack Evans Senior Citizens Center

2301 Thornhill Drive

Sherwood, AR 72120

Montgomery County

Thursday, Dec. 8

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Mount Ida Senior Activity Center

158 Senior Drive

Mt. Ida, AR 71957

Johnson County

Monday, Dec. 12

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Johnson County Senior Center

1421 Oakland St.

Clarksville, AR 72830

Independence County

Tuesday, Dec. 13

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Independence County Senior Activity Center – Batesville

1590 E. College Ave.

Batesville, AR 72501

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Labor Persuader Rule Injunction Granted

Rutledge: Permanent Injunction Granted in Labor’s Persuader Rule

Wed, Nov 16, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today released a statement following the federal district court’s issuance of a nationwide permanent injunction against the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Persuader Advice Exemption Rule. The rule, which would have forced disclosure of confidential information, communication and relationships between small businesses and their outside counsel in labor relations matters, has been found unlawful.

“The court’s decision permanently lifts a weight off small businesses in Arkansas and across the country,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Economic development and job growth are protected as employers will not be required to disclose confidential advice from attorneys needed to lawfully and appropriately respond to certain issues.”

Rutledge and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton led a 10-state coalition to intervene in National Federation of Independent Business v. Perez in May, along with attorneys general from Alabama, Indiana, Michigan, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

In April, Rutledge led a group of attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in Arkansas federal district court urging the judge to grant the plaintiff’s motion for a preliminary injunction of the rule. The brief was also filed in a similar case in a Minnesota federal district court, which also concluded that the Department of Labor rule is likely unlawful.

In addition to Rutledge joining the litigation, she has been vocal in her opposition to this rule. In February, Arkansas and 12 other states sent a letter to the U.S. Office of Management and Budget voicing opposition to the proposal. The attorneys general asserted that the rule would place undue burdens on small businesses.

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