News/Events

News ReleasesFilter  

Intervention Request to Stop FCC Order

Court Grants Rutledge’s Intervention Request to Stop FCC Order

Thu, Mar 31, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge’s motion to intervene in a federal lawsuit against the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been granted by the D.C. Circuit. The lawsuit, which was brought by the State of Oklahoma, challenges an FCC order that would effectively limit the amount of money that Arkansas and other local units of government may recover from Inmate Calling Systems (ICS).

“It is important for Arkansas to add its voice in strong opposition to the FCC’s order,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “By being a part of this litigation, I will work to ensure that local budgets and law enforcement agencies across this State are not burdened with a costly, unlawful order from the federal government. I am confident that in the end the Courts will invalidate this order, which failed to consider cost permanently.”

On March 7, the D.C. Circuit granted in part a motion to stay the order.

The FCC’s order, which caps rates and limits fees for ICS, ignores significant ICS- and security-related costs borne by the states and their need to recoup these costs from ICS providers.

The FCC caps inmate calls at 11 cents per minute for all local and long distance calls from state and federal prisons. In jails, prices will range from 14 cents to 22 cents per minute, depending on the size of the institution. The new cap accounts for a more than 50 percent decrease from previous limits. Additionally, in a constitutionally-suspect power grab, the new caps will apply to all intrastate calls, not just interstate calls.

Rutledge, along with Attorneys General from Wisconsin, Nevada, Arizona, Indiana, Louisiana and Missouri, filed the motion to intervene last month.

MORE
Mobile Office Locations for April

Rutledge Announces Mobile Office Locations for April

Tue, Mar 29, 2016

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

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, 17 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. Attorney General Rutledge believes there is no issue too small for her staff to have a face-to-face conversation.

Attorney General Rutledge recently 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:

Scott County

Monday, April 4

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Scott County Senior Citizens Center

1508 Clyde Hawkins Drive

Waldron, AR 72958

Crawford County

Tuesday, April 5

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Van Buren Senior Activity Center

607 Knox St.

Van Buren, AR 72956

Woodruff County

Thursday, April 7

9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

St. Bernards Woodruff County Senior Life Center

303 Cache St.

Patterson, AR 72123

Baxter County

Monday, April 11

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Van Matre Senior Activity and Wellness Center

1101 Spring St.

Mountain Home, AR 72653

Stone County

Tuesday, April 12

9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Mountain View Senior Center

210 School Ave.

Mountain View, AR 72560

Garland County

Thursday, April 14

9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Hot Springs Senior Center

210 Woodbine St.

Hot Springs, AR 71901

Newton County

Monday, April 18

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Newton County Senior Activity and Wellness Center

100 Clark St.

Jasper, AR 72641

Boone County

Thursday, April 21

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Harrison City Hall

114 S. Spring St.

Harrison, AR 72601

Chicot County

Monday, April 25

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Lakeside Apartments

628 Mulberry St.

Lake Village, AR 71653

Desha County

Tuesday, April 26

9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Southeast Arkansas Regional Library – McGehee Branch

211 N. Fourth St.

McGehee, AR 71654

Lee County

Thursday, April 28

10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Lee County Library

77 W. Main St.

Marianna, AR 72360

MORE
Defends Law to Protect Arkansas Patients

Rutledge Successfully Defends Law to Protect Arkansas Patients

Tue, Mar 29, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge earlier this month prevailed in a case, Baptist Health Systems v. Rutledge, that kept in place Act 766 of 2013, also known as the Arkansas Peer Review Fairness Act. The State Supreme Court agreed in a 5-2 decision with Rutledge’s request not to consider the Act’s constitutionality because the three hospitals challenging it had not alleged that the statute was harming them and it would be inappropriate for the Court to offer judgment.

“This was an important case to ensure that Arkansans receive the highest quality health care,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Act 766, which was duly passed by the General Assembly, is a proper way to protect the peer-review process in the State’s health care institutions. Peer review is accepted as the most effective means of monitoring quality and improving patient care, and it is essential to preserving the highest standards for Arkansas’s health care providers.”

MORE
Disappointed Labor Department Moves Forward with Rule

Rutledge Disappointed Labor Department Moves Forward with Rule Harming Small Businesses

Wed, Mar 23, 2016
MORE
Child Safety Poster Contest Winners

Rutledge Announces Child Safety Poster Contest Winners

Thu, Mar 17, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced the winners of the 2016 Child Safety Poster Contest at a ceremony last night. The theme of the contest, sponsored by the Attorney General’s office, was Bring Our Missing Children Home.

“I want to thank all of the students, families and teachers who participated and congratulate the poster contest winners from Cabot, Little Rock, Mena and Pine Bluff,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “I appreciate the safety discussions this contest created across the State. More than 500 entries were received and these creative students did an excellent job highlighting this year’s theme. I am extremely impressed by the talent of our young Arkansans.”

Attorney General Rutledge also extended her appreciation to the contest judges: Melinda Faubel with AT&T, Cynthia Haas with the Arkansas Arts Council and Paul Leopoulos with the Thea Foundation. AT&T helped sponsor the contest, and the Thea Foundation hosted the awards ceremony.

2016 winners:

Kindergarten

  • Brookelynn Anders, Edgewood Elementary School (Pine Bluff), 1st Place
  • Jeimy Garcia, Edgewood Elementary School (Pine Bluff), 2nd Place
  • Ja’Breya Spellman, Edgewood Elementary School (Pine Bluff), 3rd Place

1st Grade

  • Ryan Howard, Edgewood Elementary School (Pine Bluff), 1st Place
  • Za’Miyah Litzsey, Edgewood Elementary School (Pine Bluff), 2nd Place
  • Elijah Watson, Edgewood Elementary School (Pine Bluff), 3rd Place

2nd Grade

  • Pablo Vazquez, Carver Magnet Elementary School (Little Rock), 1st Place

3rd Grade

  • Burcu Karabacak, Carver Magnet Elementary School (Little Rock), 1st Place
  • Addison Thomas, Holly Harshman Elementary School (Mena), 2nd Place
  • McKenzie Knighten, Holly Harshman Elementary School (Mena), 3rd Place
  • Avalyn Sexton, Holly Harshman Elementary School (Mena), 3rd Place

4th Grade

  • Hailey Emerson, Holly Harshman Elementary School (Mena), 1st Place
  • Myla Nelms, Western Hills Elementary School (Little Rock), 2nd Place
  • Psalm Wistrand, Pulaski Heights Elementary School (Little Rock), 3rd Place

5th Grade

  • Mason Smith, Cabot Middle School North (Cabot), 1st Place
  • Layla Sessler, Holly Harshman Elementary School (Mena), 2nd Place
  • Emma Johnson, Holly Harshman Elementary School (Mena), 3rd Place

The winning fifth grade poster, submitted by Mason Smith, will be entered into the National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest, hosted by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

MORE
Settlement to Resolve Kickback Allegations

Arkansas to Receive Settlement to Resolve Kickback Allegations Against a New Jersey based Pharmaceutical Company

Wed, Mar 16, 2016

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced that the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units joined the federal government to reach an agreement in principle with the pharmaceutical manufacturer Daiichi Sankyo, Inc., a global pharmaceutical company with its U.S. headquarters in New Jersey, to settle allegations that the company violated the False Claims Act. Rutledge released the following statement:

“Arkansas is set to receive $15,459.81 from a multi-state settlement reached with Daiichi Sankyo, Inc. The Arkansas Medicaid Trust Fund, which incurred losses as a result of this fraud, will be reimbursed. This pharmaceutical company violated the False Claims Act by using meals and speaker program honoraria as incentives to entice physicians to prescribe the drugs Azor, Benicar, Tribenzor and Welchol.”

Daiichi Sankyo will pay the states and the federal government a total of $39 million in civil damages and penalties for Medicaid and other federally-funded health care programs.

The investigation that led to the settlement grew out of a false claims action filed by a former Daiichi Sankyo sales representative in 2010. The whistleblower’s complaint alleged that the claims were false because they resulted from kickbacks that Daiichi Sankyo provided to physicians who prescribed the drugs.

The settlement agreement reimburses the federal government and the participating states for damages that were assessed in accordance with the amounts that Daiichi Sankyo expended on each speaker program for each fiscal year. The total Medicaid portion of the settlement – state and federal – is $10 million; and the states’ share of the Medicaid recovery is $5 million. Additionally, as part of the settlement, Daiichi Sankyo has agreed to enter into a Corporate Integrity Agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), which obligates Daiichi Sankyo to undertake substantial internal compliance reforms for the next five years.

Forty-nine states and the District of Columbia are participating in the settlement. The federal settlement was announced by the Justice Department in January of this year.

Arkansas’s portion of the settlement will be placed in the Arkansas Medicaid Trust Fund.

MORE
Contact Us
Sign Up For Attorney General Alerts