February 22

One year after I announced Kentucky's participation in the $25 billion national mortgage foreclosure settlement, I am proud to report that more than1,500 Kentucky homeowners have received $55.5 million in consumer relief from the nation's five largest mortgage servicers as of December 31, 2012. Additionally, relief claims totaling more than $2 million are in process, bringing Kentucky's total consumer relief to $57.5 million.

Nationally, the third post-settlement report released yesterday shows that the banks have provided more than $45 billion to 550,000 borrowers. This direct relief has helped keep people in their homes and provided second chances for struggling families. For more information, please see our press release.

We have taken action this week against another drug company that has put profits ahead of patient care. We filed suit on Feb. 20 against GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), the manufacturer of Avandia, a prescription drug used to treat diabetes. Our lawsuit alleges that GSK violated Kentucky's Consumer Protection Act by engaging in deceptive advertising, overstating the effectiveness of Avandia and hiding the drug's risks from Kentuckians. In fact, doctors from the Mayo Clinic found that 87 percent of the authors who wrote scientific articles about the safety and effectiveness of Avandia had financial ties to GSK.

Our complaint seeks injunctive relief and civil penalties of up to $10,000 per violation against GSK. For more information, please see our press release.

Kentucky families struggling to heat their homes this winter have received additional assistance as a result of a coordinated effort between my Office of Rate Intervention, the Kentucky Public Service Commission and Community Action Kentucky. We've obtained nearly $50,000 in additional aid for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) thanks to a payment from a March 2012 settlement between federal regulators and Constellation Energy over its alleged manipulation of the wholesale energy market.

This additional funding was used immediately to assist Kentucky households who were facing the loss of their electric services. More information is available in our press release.

I'm looking forward to attending next week's annual meeting of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG). The prescription drug epidemic will be among the topics of discussion. Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and I are co-chairing the NAAG Substance Abuse Committee and will lead a panel discussion on prescription pill diversion, national trends, law enforcement response and treatment options on Tuesday, Feb. 26 from 3-4 p.m.

We are honored to have Gil Kerlikowske, Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, among our panelists. A video from the panel discussion will be available through NAAG's website at naag.org under the 2013 Winter Spring Meeting.