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  • February 27

    This week I was honored to team up once again with the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility (FAAR), a national organization leading the fight to eliminate drunk driving and underage drinking. I joined with FAAR to tape a PSA highlighting the importance of talking with your kids about safe driving and alcohol responsibility. Stay tuned for the PSA, which will air in April during Alcohol Responsibility Month. You can learn more about FAAR here.

    Be sure to also check out this recent article from Pacific Standard magazine about our case against Purdue Pharma and our efforts to hold the company accountable for its marketing of the drug OxyContin. Our lawsuit alleges that Purdue Pharma’s aggressive and deceptive marketing tactics misled doctors and consumers, creating addicts and wreaking havoc in our Commonwealth. I look forward to the day when Purdue answers for its actions that helped fuel the epidemic of prescription drug abuse that’s taken such a toll on families and communities across Kentucky.

  • February 20

    As Kentuckians continue digging out from deep snow and dealing with dangerously cold temperatures, my office and I are putting Kentucky businesses on notice that price gouging will not be tolerated. This week I requested that Gov. Beshear sign a consumer protection executive order to implement Kentucky’s price gouging laws statewide.

    The order gives my office the authority to investigate and prosecute, where appropriate, those who sell gasoline, generators, building supplies, chain saws, hotel rooms and other necessary goods and services at an exorbitant price in a time of disaster.

    Kentuckians digging out from this storm should not be victimized again by predatory pricing. I encourage everyone to take caution during this time of emergency, keep your families safe and remember those around us who may need a helping hand.

    Anyone with information regarding possible price gouging should contact my office at 1-888-432-9257 or consumerprotection@ky.gov.

  • February 13

    When Anthem, one of the nation’s largest health insurers, announced this month that it had been the target of a sophisticated cyberattack, scammers seized the opportunity to prey on vulnerable customers through phishing scams. It didn’t take long for emails masquerading as legitimate communications from Anthem to start popping up in the inboxes of the company’s current and former members. My staff and I want you to know that these emails are bogus and should be discarded.

    Phishing schemes attempt to steal your personal and sensitive information, including passwords and credit card information. The phony emails often contain malicious software camouflaged underneath “click here” links that can also gain access to your computer and private information. Consumers who fall victim to these scams risk having their finances compromised and identities stolen.

    Keep in mind that legitimate companies will never request sensitive information via email. Don’t reply to these emails, click on links or call phone numbers provided in the message, and know that you can always verify the communication by calling the company directly.

    Anthem continues to investigate the data breach and is determining which members’ personal information was impacted by the cyberattack. In the meantime, current and former Anthem members can enroll in two years of free credit monitoring and identity protection services. I encourage members to take advantage of these services. A data breach does not automatically mean you are a victim of identity theft. However, the faster you detect identity theft, the sooner you can report and correct it.

    To learn more about the data breach, how you can sign up for protections being offered by Anthem, and how you can protect yourself from identity theft, visit the Consumer Protection section of our website here.

  • February 6

    This week I had the opportunity to visit Henry Clay High School and have an important conversation with the students there about the dangers of prescription drug abuse and heroin. I care about our kids and keeping them healthy and away from drugs are issues that I’m passionate about. Karen Shay, a mother who lost her teenage daughter to a prescription drug overdose, feels the same way.

    That’s why Karen and I travel the state speaking to middle and high school students as part of our Keep Kentucky Kids Safe drug prevention program. It’s because of Karen, and the countless other parents like her who have lost children to prescription drug abuse, that we must remain vigilant in our efforts to combat this scourge.

    I want to thank Principal Greg Quenon for allowing us to speak at his school. I also appreciate his commitment to helping educate his students about the negative effects of substance abuse. A taping of our presentation at Henry Clay High is available on our YouTube channel.

    On Wednesday, I joined the Kentucky Association of Food Banks in the Capitol Rotunda for the Rally to Solve Hunger. The rally, which was part of Food Bank Day at the Capitol, was held to raise awareness about the fight against hunger in Kentucky.

    All of us have a role to play in solving hunger in our state – government, charities, business, and individuals. My office is pleased to be doing its part by sponsoring the March Against Hunger campaign, a fundraising event involving private law firms that helps feed hungry children and families in our communities. Each year, the donations received through March Against Hunger help ease the uncertainty for struggling families and make a difference in the fight against hunger in Kentucky.

    For more information about the Kentucky Association of Food Banks, click here.

    I also had the opportunity to catch up with a great group of young professionals from Louisville and Northern Kentucky who were visiting Frankfort this week. I enjoyed speaking with them about the work we do each day in the Office of the Attorney General.

    You can read more about the latest news from my office in our monthly newsletter, Kentucky General News.

  • January 30

    When filing your tax returns this year, consider supporting child sexual abuse prevention programs across the Commonwealth through the Kentucky Income Tax Refund Check-Off program. Located in the “Fund Contributions” section of your state income tax form, the tax refund check-off allows you to donate to the Child Victims’ Trust Fund (CVTF), a nonprofit program that provides local communities with funding for child sexual abuse prevention programs.

    These critical programs provide children with personal safety skills, teach adults how to keep kids safe from sexual abuse and exploitation, and educate the public on how to report suspected child abuse, which state law requires.

    As your Attorney General, I’m proud to chair the Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Prevention Board, which administers the CVTF, and I have seen firsthand how the fund is making a difference in the lives of Kentucky’s most vulnerable children.

    You can learn more about the CVTF and its mission at ICareAboutKids.ky.gov.

    Next week I’m looking forward to visiting Henry Clay High School in Lexington. Karen Shay and I will be sharing our Keep Kentucky Kids Safe message with the students there, encouraging them not to become the next generation lost to prescription drug abuse.

    I’ll also be on-air Monday morning talking with my radio friends at WLGC in Ashland, WBVR in Bowling Green, and WTTL in Madisonsville. If you live near one of those areas, I hope you’ll tune in.

  • January 24

    This week my Office of Rate Intervention and I announced that we have successfully saved eastern Kentucky ratepayers $54 million in unlawful fuel costs charged by Kentucky Power Co., the result of our intervention in a utility case previously before the Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC).

    In an order issued by the PSC, citing joint testimony from my office and the Kentucky Industrial Utility Customers, the Commission deemed the fuel costs unreasonable and directed Kentucky Power to refund ratepayers $13.2 million that it had already collected during the first four months of last year. The PSC also barred the company from collecting an estimated $41 million in additional fuel costs that was to be collected through the end of May 2015. Over the 17-month period, the average residential customer will save approximately $155.

    This is great news. As Attorney General, I am proud to serve as an advocate for Kentucky consumers, and at a time when every dollar saved can make a difference for so many Kentuckians, I’m pleased that we are keeping this money in the pockets of ratepayers in eastern Kentucky. Since 2008, my Office of Rate Intervention has intervened in rate cases and other utility matters resulting in more than $1.18 billion in savings for Kentucky ratepayers. You can read more about the PSC’s order here.

    Finally, our Commonwealth lost an incredible man this week in retired U.S. Senator Wendell Ford. He was my dear friend, and one of the largest influences on my professional life. Wendell Ford fought for Kentucky - its schools, its towns, its farmers, and its airports. But most of all, he fought for the people of the Commonwealth he loved so dearly. What a public servant. Elizabeth and I send our condolences to his wife, Jean, and their entire family.

  • January 16

    This week, investigators with my Cybercrimes Unit arrested two men in Kenton County for allegedly possessing child pornography. Since the creation of the Cybercrimes Unit in 2008, we’ve taken nearly 700,000 child pornographic images and videos off of the Internet. I know that our efforts are helping make the Internet a safer place for Kentucky kids, and I appreciate the work my Cybercrimes investigators do each day. You can read more about the arrests in our press release.

    On Monday, I’m looking forward to participating in the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. motorcade and rally in Louisville. For more than four decades, these events have served as an important way for us to remember Dr. King and reflect on his legacy. Dr. King always stressed and believed in nonviolence, and his courage to take a stand and move this country forward is an inspiration. If you’re attending either of the events on Monday, please stop by and say hello.

    Finally, Louisville lost one of its champions this week in Metro Council President Jim King. Jim was a family friend, a businessman who cared deeply about his community and a dedicated public servant. I was shocked and saddened to learn of his passing. Elizabeth and I are keeping his wife and family in our thoughts and prayers.

  • January 9

    Heroin is killing Kentuckians. In 2013, 230 Kentuckians died from heroin overdoses, and health and law enforcement officials expect heroin overdose fatalities from 2014 may exceed that number. The time is now to confront the reality of a growing heroin epidemic in our state.

    This week I was proud to join Gov. Beshear and First Lady Beshear in announcing that heroin overdose reversal kits will be purchased for Kentucky hospitals with the highest rates of heroin overdose deaths. We’re using funds from the $32 million my office recovered in settlements with two pharmaceutical companies to buy approximately 2,000 Naloxone rescue kits for the University of Louisville Hospital, University of Kentucky Hospital, and the St. Elizabeth Hospital system in Northern Kentucky.

    This project will allow us to get this medicine into the hands and homes of the people who need it most -- heroin users and their families. These kits will help save lives and provide a second chance for people to seek treatment for their addictions.

    To read more about this project and learn how we’re using the settlement funds for additional substance abuse treatment programs and initiatives across the Commonwealth, click here.

    I want to also remind high school seniors who have been impacted by prescription drug abuse that the deadline to apply for our college scholarship program is now less than three weeks away. The Sarah Shay and Michael Donta Memorial Scholarships for Hope and Healing were created in 2013 to help those students who have excelled in their personal and academic lives despite seeing the devastating consequences of prescription drug abuse.

    The scholarships, which are $1,500 each, will help two seniors get a fresh start and a chance at completing their college education.

    Scholarship applications can be downloaded here. The deadline to apply is January 28.

  • 2015

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