DRUG CRISIS: Another county sues pharmaceutical firms


WILKES-BARRE (WOLF) -- Luzerne County has now sued pharmaceutical companies seeking to recover costs from the opioid crisis.

The county says the suit was filed on Wednesday. Last month, county council voted 6-4 to use the Texas-based firm Baron and Budd to file their suit.

County manager Dave Pedri had said it will charge 30-percent plus fees if they win.

Councilman Rick Williams had questioned whether those fees could be very high, but Pedri said they'd already negotiated the percentage way down.

He said the firm is representing more than 100 municipalities and the county would be able to challenge the fees..

"It will cost the taxpayers nothing," says Pedri on Thursday. "We are purely on a contingent-fee basis with our attorneys. This will be a long and drawn-out fight. It will take a couple of years probably. We're hoping that we're able to be successful."

Lackawanna and Delaware counties have also filed similar action. Lackawanna County commissioners announced their suit in September.

During last month's vote, Councilman Stephen Urban was one of those opposing the measure, saying the county never sued drug dealers or doctors. Urban said this could cripple companies that do good for seniors, causing prescription costs to go up.

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