(The Center Square) – Wisconsin county leaders are on-board with a $400 million payday for the state.
Attorney General Josh Kaul announced Wednesday that Wisconsin’s share of the national opioid settlement will come to about $400 million.
“[The] Wisconsin DOJ is committed to pursuing accountability from the corporations whose conduct worsened the opioid crisis and to recovering as much as possible from those companies to support efforts to fight the crisis,” Kaul said in a statement.
In order to get the full $400 million, cities and counties in Wisconsin must agree to the settlement and drop any lawsuits they may have filed.
The Wisconsin Counties Association on Wednesday said they are ready to settle.
WCA Board Chairman and Wood County Board Chair, Lance Pliml, said he’s “confident the deal we fought so hard to get meets with county approval.”
County leaders say the opioid crisis has strapped local governments for years. Jails have been filled with drug suspects and drug addicts, and thousands of people have died from opioid overdoses.
Milwaukee County Corporation Counsel Margaret Daun on Wednesday said that’s why local governments, not just the state, want to see opioid makers punished.
“As I’ve said from the get-go, the people of Milwaukee County have been hit incredibly hard by the epidemic. We are losing lives and families are being destroyed, Daun said in a statement. “Real accountability is finally starting to happen. We are very excited to see money start flowing into the County so we can begin the process of abatement and rehabilitation.”
No one is saying just how much each county will get under the terms of the settlement.
There’s no word from cities in Wisconsin or the League of Wisconsin Municipalities about their plans for the settlement offer.
Wisconsin has until August 20 to sign-on to the deal.