$3.1 Billion Settlement with Walmart Over Opioid Epidemic

$3.1 Billion Settlement with Walmart Over Opioid Epidemic

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

November 15, 2022

Media Contact:
AG Press

AG Nessel Announces $3.1 Billion Settlement with Walmart Over Opioid Epidemic Allegations

LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced that she has reached a settlement with Walmart to resolve allegations that the company contributed to the opioid addiction crisis by failing to appropriately oversee the dispensing of opioids at its stores.

The settlement will provide more than $3 billion nationally and will require significant improvements in how Walmart’s pharmacies handle opioids. State attorneys general on the executive committee, attorneys representing local governments, and Walmart have agreed to this settlement, and it is now being sent to other states for review and approval.

“Since their introduction in the marketplace, opioids have had a devastating impact on our country and our state,” Nessel said. “Walmart’s lax dispensing of prescription opioids has resulted in thousands of Michigan families being touched by substance use disorder or the death of a loved one due to opioid use. This settlement will provide needed funds for intervention and treatment, as well as hold Walmart accountable for the lack of oversight at its pharmacies.”

The settlement will include:

  • $3.1 billion to be divided by states that sign on, local governments, and tribes, which must be used to provide treatment and recovery services to people struggling with opioid use disorder.
  • Broad, court-ordered requirements, including robust oversight to prevent fraudulent prescriptions and flag suspicious prescriptions.

The parties are optimistic that the settlement will gain support of the required 43 states by the end of 2022, allowing local governments to join the deal during the first quarter of 2023. Further details about how the money will be distributed will be forthcoming. Last month, states confirmed that promising negotiations were also underway with Walgreens and CVS. The parties continue their efforts to achieve those agreements.

Attorneys General from North Carolina, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Texas have served as the lead negotiators on this deal.

New VA Benefits for Veterans

New VA Benefits for Veterans

U.S. Senator Gary Peters
 

Friend –

As we recognize our veterans and their families this Veterans Day, I want to take a moment to share an update about new Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) resources available to Michigan veterans. Many of our nation’s heroes are suffering as a result of being exposed to harmful substances like Agent Orange or toxic burn pits during their service.

That’s why I was proud to help pass the Honoring Our PACT Act into law to finally ensure these veterans, along with their survivors, can obtain their long-overdue health care and benefits through the VA.

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Click play to learn more about the new VA benefits available through the PACT Act

 

I recently traveled across Michigan to meet with local veterans and their families to raise awareness about these new benefits available to those who served our nation. But, I also need your help to spread the word to veterans in your lives so we can reach as many people as possible.

While the VA is expected to begin processing claims under this new law in January, veterans can now file claims and apply for PACT Act-related benefits by calling the Veterans Administration (VA) at 800-698-2411 or filing a claim online for disability benefits and/or VA health care. For more information about the PACT Act, folks can also visit my website by clicking here.

As a former Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve, son of a World War II veteran, and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I know we have a responsibility to ensure our veterans can access the health care, benefits, and support they have earned.

That’s why I hope you’ll join me in sharing this information with impacted veterans in our communities. If my office can ever be of assistance while navigating these new benefits, please contact us by clicking here or calling (844) 506-7420 (toll free).

Thanks for reading,

Gary Peters
United States Senator for Michigan

40 Attorneys General Announce Google Settlement

40 Attorneys General Announce Google Settlement

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

November 14, 2022

Media Contact:
AG Press

40 Attorneys General Announce Historic Google Settlement over Location Tracking Practices

LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced that Michigan, along with 39 other attorneys general, has reached a $391.5 million multistate settlement with Google over its location tracking practices relating to Google Account settings. This is the largest multistate Attorney General privacy settlement in the history of the U.S. Michigan will receive closed to $12 million from the settlement.

“Google makes the majority of its revenue from using the personal data of those who search in its browsers and use its apps,” Nessel said. “The company’s online reach enables it to target consumers without the consumer’s knowledge or permission. However, the transparency requirements of this settlement will ensure that Google not only makes users aware of how their location data is being used, but also how to change their account settings if they wish to disable location-related account settings, delete the data collected and set data retention limits. I have made it a priority to help consumers navigate online spaces while keeping their privacy intact and I am glad Michigan will benefit from this historic settlement, which lets Google know that its obtuse privacy practices have gone unchecked for too long.”

Location data is a key part of Google’s digital advertising business. Google uses the personal and behavioral data it collects to build detailed user profiles and target ads on behalf of its advertising customers. Location data is among the most sensitive and valuable personal information Google collects. Even a limited amount of location data can expose a person’s identity and routines and can be used to infer personal details.

The attorneys general opened the Google investigation following a 2018 Associated Press article that revealed Google “records your movements even when you explicitly tell it not to.” The article focused on two Google account settings: Location History and Web & App Activity. Location History is “off” unless a user turns on the setting, but Web & App Activity, a separate account setting, is automatically “on” when users set up a Google account, including all Android phone users.  As detailed in the settlement, the attorneys general found that Google violated state consumer protection laws by misleading consumers about its location tracking practices since at least 2014. Specifically, Google caused users to be confused about the scope of the Location History setting, the fact that the Web & App Activity setting existed and also collected location information, and the extent to which consumers who use Google products and services could limit Google’s location tracking by adjusting their account and device settings.

The settlement requires Google to be more transparent with consumers about its practices. Google must:

  • Show additional information to users whenever they turn a location-related account setting “on” or “off”;
  • Make key information about location tracking unavoidable for users (i.e., not hidden); and
  • Give users detailed information about the types of location data Google collects and how it’s used at an enhanced “Location Technologies” webpage.

The settlement also limits Google’s use and storage of certain types of location information and requires Google account controls to be more user-friendly.

The attorneys general of Oregon and Nebraska led the settlement negotiations, assisted by Arkansas, Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. The final settlement was also joined by Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Michigan’s Strong Economic Growth with 473 New Jobs

Michigan’s Strong Economic Growth with 473 New Jobs

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 10, 2022

Contact: press@michigan.gov

 

Gov. Whitmer Continues Michigan’s Strong Economic Growth with 473 New Jobs and $26 Million Investment in Genesee, Monroe, Washtenaw Counties

Michigan wins projects over other states and countries, building on strong economic momentum

 

LANSING, Mich. – Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer joined the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) to announce that the state has approved support through the Michigan Strategic Fund for three business expansion projects expected to create a total of 473 new jobs and generate a total private investment of more than $26 million. The projects are in in Grand Blanc Township, Ypsilanti Township, and the city of Monroe.

 

“These business expansions will create 473 good-paying jobs and bring over $26 million of investment to Grand Blanc, Ypsilanti, and Monroe to help us keep growing our economy,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “By working together across the aisle, we have brought home record investments creating thousands of jobs in every region of our state. And we are building on our momentum, with over 135,000 jobs added to our economy year over year, low unemployment, and strong growth, especially in manufacturing. Together, we will continue our collaboration economic development, support our strong manufacturing workforce and innovative businesses, and get things done on the fundamental issues so they can grow and thrive.”

 

“The decisions by these three companies to expand in Michigan highlight the strength of our advanced manufacturing ecosystem, while furthedemonstrating our commitment to providing long-term economic growth for all Michiganders,” said Quentin L. Messer, Jr., CEO of MEDC and President and Chair of the MSF Board. “These projects are wins for the entire state. We are grateful to the Governor, legislators and local officials for their continued support of our efforts.  These projects reflect our commitment to working with our partners to ensure that Michigan becomes an even better place for each of our 10 million-plus friends and neighbors to live, work, visit, play, and create futures. Work remains ahead, yet we are grateful for the vote of confidence continue to show in Team Michigan.”

 

rendering of the 360 Digilab project

 

360 Digilab, LLC is a family-owned business specializing in the latest technology to deliver state-of-the-art fitting dental restorations. The company works with intraoral scanners to manufacture crowns, bridges, implants, bite splints, and surgical guides. Established in 2018 and headquartered in the city of Monroe, the company has quickly become a leader in dental restorations with increased sales and company contracts. Today, 360 Digilab employs 40 Michigan residents, 22 of which are full time.

 

360 Digilab is experiencing significant growth and has outgrown its current workspace. The company plans to purchase a new building in Monroe that will provide additional space to grow its current product portfolio, including the development of removable denture partials and surgical planning procedures. The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $1.44 million and create up to 100 jobs in the life sciences and medical device industry, supported by a $600,000 Jobs Ready Michigan grant. The company chose to expand in Michigan rather than outsource the production of its designs to other countries including the Philippines, China, and Costa Rica.

 

The new facility will be a full-service dental lab with the capacity to support other dental labs. The company plans to create a hands-on training program involving lab work, the creation of prosthetic dental and orthodontic restorations, and providing industry certification.

 

Individuals interested in careers with 360 Digilab should visit http://www.360digilab.com/contact-info/.

 

“360 Digilab is utilizing cutting edge technology to disrupt the centuries old Dental Industry. On behalf of the BDC, we are thrilled that 360 has decided to make significant investment and grow their workforce in the City of Monroe,” said Monroe County Business Development Corp. Director of Economic Development Matt Vanisacker. “We want to sincerely thank the City for their work throughout the years to create a welcoming environment for business growth and success. The company’s expansion will serve as a catalyst for the Downtown area; sparking additional business investment in Monroe County, Michigan’s Cornerstone.” 

 

MARA image

 

Mara Technologies USA Inc. is a subsidiary of Invotek Group Inc., a Markham, Ontario-headquartered provider of high reliability electronics supporting global broadband telecommunication, IOT devices and infrastructure and EV and other power management systems. The company is part of a global organization operating in Asia, Europe, and North America with more than 2,000 associates worldwide. This operation will be the first of its kind in the United States.

 

The company is launching manufacturing in Michigan in support of its customers localization and onshoring strategies. Products manufactured at the new facility will enable its customer, a worldwide leader in broadband technology, in support of the federal BEAD initiative. The Invotek group will acquire a facility in Grand Blanc Township, where it will run production and operate its US headquarters.

 

The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $28 million and create 298 jobs, supported by a $1 million Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. The Invotek group chose the facility in Grand Blanc over a Mexican proposal as Michigan provided better proximity to a talented workforce, supply chain infrastructure, and customer objectives.

 

“We are very happy to have the help we are getting from MEDC and the State of Michigan to create good American jobs and bring production back onshore,” said Invotek Group/Mara Technologies USA Vice President of Operations Jeffrey S. Gary. “The products we will be making will upgrade communications infrastructure and extend broadband communications to areas where it was previously unavailable.  We are proud of the improvements we are making to the country and to our Michigan employees.”

 

The project will bring nearly 300 tech jobs with a large and growing electronic parts manufacturer to the Flint region. Mara Technologies offers opportunities to its staff to cross-train, allowing employees to grow their skillsets, and plans to partner with Michigan Works! to reach local talent in disadvantaged areas and underrepresented employees.

 

The Flint & Genesee Economic Alliance plans to assist the company in finding candidates for the new positions. For information on careers with Mara Technologies, contact info@maratechusa.com.

 

“Mara Technologies’ decision to open a location in Grand Blanc Township is an exciting development for Genesee County,” said Tyler Rossmaessler, executive director of Flint & Genesee Economic Alliance. “Our region has a robust talent pipeline to meet the company’s needs, and we look forward to supporting their continued growth in our community.”

 

JB Poindexter & Co (JBPCO) is a diversified manufacturing company headquartered in Houston, TX. The company manages a portfolio of business units engaged in the production of a wide range of vehicles and bodies, including commercial trucks, service utility trucks, limousines, and more. The company sells its products through a network of independent truck dealers, original equipment manufacturers, leasing companies, government entities and commercial and individual end users. The company employs more than 6,800 team members in more than 56 facilities across North America, with 900 employees in Michigan.

 

EAVX is JBPCO’s innovation center and technology hub, with 95 percent of its business dedicated to transportation. To meet increased customer demand and become the bodybuilder of choice for the alternative fuel market, the company plans to expand its operations in Ypsilanti Township where it will add the EAVX business unit. EAVX will specialize in manufacturing alternative power chassis and producing prototype vehicles with advanced electric and autonomous powered chassis from various chassis manufacturers.

 

The project is expected to generate a total capital investment of $3.79 million and create 75 high-wage jobs, supported by a $600,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant. The company chose Michigan for the project over competing sites in Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia because of Michigan’s outstanding reputation in automotive research and development.

 

The project will bring immediate job growth with a growing auto supplier and contributes to the MEDC’s ongoing efforts to position Michigan as the global leader in the future of mobility and vehicle electrification.

 

JBPCO offers cross training to its employees to allow them to grow their skillsets and strives to promote from within. The company also utilizes Michigan Works! to reach local talent and partners with local universities, including the University of Michigan.

 

Ann Arbor SPARK has offered staff recruitment and workforce training assistance in support of the project. For information on careers with JB Poindexter, visit https://careers.jbpoindexter.com/us/en.

 

“Hosting EAVX’s technology hub in Ypsilanti Township is a great partnership opportunity for our region. Innovation is at the heart of EAVX’s work in mobility, and plugs in seamlessly with the new ideas, products and talent being developed in the greater Ann Arbor region, said Ann Arbor SPARK President and CEO Paul Krutko. “We’re excited to partner with EAVX as they choose Ypsilanti Township for this project, and continue to connect as they grow their team, and demonstrate new ideas to the world.”

 

Circuit Court Building Will Be Awash in Green Light

Circuit Court Building Will Be Awash in Green Light

Oakland County Circuit Court Building Will Be Awash in Green Light to Honor Veterans

  • As part of Operation Greenlight, County Executive Coulter will host leaders of veterans’ organizations, county employees who are veterans, and county leaders to the Executive Office Building Thursday to watch the illumination of the top of the courthouse.
  • Oakland County Veterans’ Services helps more than 58,000 veterans who live in Oakland County with a variety of services including access to disability compensation, pension, health care, burial benefits, education, life insurance, home loans, and transportation program.
  • Oakland County Veterans’ Services also hosts monthly veterans’ resource fairs where representatives from several organizations are available to veterans, active duty, guard and reserves, and their families.

Pontiac, Michigan – Oakland County will illuminate the top of the Oakland County Circuit Court building in green from Thursday, Nov. 10 through Monday, Nov. 13, joining communities across the United States which are participating in “Operation Green Light,” a national campaign to honor veterans and to shine a spotlight on the services and resources that are available to them. The building is located at 1200 North Telegraph Road in Pontiac.

“The lights are a simple reminder that on Veterans’ Day and on all days, we honor the men and women who make the decision to serve our country with courage, integrity and pride,” Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter said. “To all the veterans in Oakland County, I humbly salute you for your service, your sacrifice and your devotion to country.”

Coulter is welcoming leaders of veterans’ organizations, county employees who are veterans, and county leaders to the Executive Office Building, 2100 Pontiac Lake Road in Waterford, from 5 to 6 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 10 for a reception and to watch the top of the courthouse become flooded in green light. Media are welcome to attend.

The National Association of Counties created Operation Green Light as a tribute to veterans across the county. It is designed to inspire local veterans to explore the services provided to them by their local Veteran’s service offices.

Oakland County Veterans’ Services helps more than 58,000 veterans who live in Oakland County with a variety of services. The county’s veterans’ benefits counselors advocate on behalf of veterans and their dependents to access their state and federal benefits including disability compensation, pension, health care, burial benefits, education, life insurance, home loans, and transportation program to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers in Detroit and Ann Arbor.

Veterans’ benefit counselors also collaborate with Oakland County Michigan Works! to provide veterans and transitioning service members with the tools needed to obtain employment. The job search assistance includes priority access to job postings, career exploration and planning, removal of barriers to employment, training opportunities, tuition assistance, and workshops on interviewing, writing a resume, and conducting job searches.

To learn more about services available to veterans, go to Oakgov.com/Veterans.

Oakland County Veterans’ Services also hosts monthly veterans’ resource fairs where representatives from several organizations are available to veterans, active duty, guard and reserves, and their families. They include the Detroit V.A.; Oakland County Housing & Neighborhood Development Division offering housing counseling; Oakland Community Health Network for behavioral health issues including a health screening; Oakland County Parks and Recreation, which provides free parks’ passes to veterans; and Oakland County Michigan Works! providing career planning, training programs, job search resources , and the opportunity to meet with an employment specialist.

Oakland County Veterans’ Services provides information and claims assistance for veteran benefits and gives away $50 Meijer gift cards to eligible veterans who are Oakland County residents and who present a copy of their DD214. Free nonperishable food boxes are also available. Here is a list of upcoming veterans’ resource fairs which run 9 a.m. to noon:

  • 17, 2022, at Orion Parks – Parks and Recreation, 1335 Joslyn Rd. in Lake Orion
  • 16, 2022, at Troy Community Center, 3179 Livernois Rd. in Troy
  • 26, 2023, at Wixom Community Center, 49015 Pontiac Tl. in Wixom

Oakland County Veterans’ Services has created an Honor Map which remembers those who have died in service of their country. It features an interactive map of photos and stories of Oakland County residents, provide by surviving family, who made the ultimate sacrifice while in uniform.

Oakland County Veterans’ Services has two offices which accept both appointments and walk-ins. The Pontiac office is located at 1200 North Telegraph Road, in Building 26 East on the county government campus. Veterans and their dependents may reach the office at 248-858-0785. The South Oakland office is at 1151 Crooks Road, Entrance B, in Troy. Their phone number is 248-655-1250.

Outreach appointments are available in Holly by appointment the second Tuesday of each month at the Karl Richter Community Center and in Farmington Hills by appointment on the second Thursday of each month at CARES of Farmington Hills. To schedule an outreach appointment, call 248-858-0785 for Holly and 248-655-1250 for Farmington Hills.

Circuit Court Building Will Be Awash in Green Light

OC Michigan Works! Celebrates National Apprenticeship Week

Oakland County Michigan Works! Celebrates National Apprenticeship Week with Events for Employers and Public Sector Officials

Waterford, Michigan – Oakland County Michigan Works! is celebrating National Apprenticeship Week Nov. 14-20 by hosting two special workshops on launching and growing a registered apprenticeship program. There are thousands of dollars available from Oakland County through the Advantage: Apprenticeships program to help employers secure and train apprentices in a variety of fields, from construction to information technology to healthcare.

“Registered apprenticeship programs help employers develop talent and, in turn, provide valuable skills our workers need to succeed,” said Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter.

On Tuesday, Nov. 15, employers interested in an apprenticeship program can attend a workshop featuring guest speakers from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and Workforce Intelligence Network, as well as Williams International and Robert Bosch, LLC, both of whom have launched registered apprenticeship programs in recent years.

The apprenticeship workshop is being held at Oakland County Executive Office Building, 2100 Pontiac Lake Rd., in Waterford.  Advance registration is required. Click here to register.

Oakland County municipal officials who are considering a public sector apprenticeship program can attend a virtual program on Thursday, Nov. 17. Guest speakers include a representative from Oakland County, which launched a DOL-registered apprenticeship program earlier this year, and the Oakland County Michigan Works! apprenticeship success coordinator.  To register, click here.

Oakland County has 200 apprenticeship programs administered by 67 employers, improving their productivity and profitability, as well as providing training and good paying jobs for employees. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 94 percent of apprentices who complete their program retain employment, with an average annual salary of $70,000.

The Bosch program lasts approximately 12 months and apprentices are required to complete specific learning hours and on-the-job training to ensure they are developing the skills essential to the job as an application developer. The Advantage: Apprenticeships program provides funding to help offset apprentice tuition, on-the-job wages, and other related costs.

“Employers are always looking for a competitive edge, an advantage over their competitors,” Oakland County Workforce Development Manager Jennifer Llewellyn said.  “Registered apprenticeship programs pay off today and well into the future. They build employee loyalty and provide a viable, rewarding career path.”

About Oakland County Michigan Works!

Oakland County Michigan Works! operates centers in Novi, Oak Park, Pontiac, Southfield, Troy, and Waterford. Combined, they assist more than 105,000 job seekers annually. Services include career coaching, interviewing and job search workshops, placement assistance, training courses and job trend information.

The centers also assist more than 3,000 employers seeking assistance with talent recruitment, apprenticeship programs, job fairs, candidate pre-screening, hiring, and training support, layoff support and labor market data.

Staff are available to work one-on-one with job seekers to build their resumes, prepare for job interviews and help address other needs. To schedule a virtual or in-person meeting, call 1-248-858-5520 and select the office nearest to you. The centers are hosting several virtual workshops for job seekers. A schedule can be found at OaklandCountyMIWorks.com.