Hood vows to sue to keep $17M

The federal government is demanding Mississippi turn over most of the $20 million the state received through a settlement with four pharmaceutical companies.

Attorney General Jim Hood disagrees, saying the the federal government already has received money from the drug makers through its own settlements.

“I will sue to stop (them) from double-dipping,” Hood said Tuesday. “This office will fight any attempt to give state money to the federal government when it is not owed.”

The letter CMS associate regional administrator Jackie Glaze sent Tuesday says states are required to pay the federal share of any overpayments recovered through lawsuits if the state does not show that the federal government already has benefitted through its own settlements.

“Mississippi has been unable to provide the requested documentation and reports it has exhausted all avenues in its efforts to locate such material,” Glaze wrote.

Hood said his office was not notified about the letter or that there was an issue over documentation .

“Instead of helping us fight the federal government to keep money the state recovered, Gov. (Haley) Barbour appears to be trying to give it away to the federal government,” Hood said.

Clarion Ledger
12/21/11