Assemblywoman Pat Egan Jones on Tuesday asked State Comptroller Philip Degnan to investigate a tax incentive award granted to opioid manufacturer Teva Pharmaceuticals by the Economic Development Authority.
“It is inconceivable to me that New Jersey and Gov. [Phil] Murphy would give $40 million to a company to relocate to New Jersey where it has been documented that they are colluding and conspiring to sell opioids and other drugs that have killed tens of thousands, including perhaps thousands alone in New Jersey,” Jones said. “The value of the precious lives lost as a result of the drugs peddled by this company cannot be calculated.”
The task force convened by Gov. Phil Murphy is holding its third meeting on Tuesday. The panel will take public testimony at the hearing, including from Jones and former State Sen. Ray Lesniak.
Teva received its tax credit after settling charges related to its role in the opioid crisis in Oklahoma. It paid that state $85 million as part of the settlement.
“The Murphy Administration and the agency that approved this application cannot be relied upon to conduct an impartial, fair and transparent inquiry,” Jones said. “Nor can the so-called task force created by Gov. Murphy be entrusted with this solemn review.”
Jones, long a fixture of Camden politics, is retiring at the end of this year.Jones Testimony EDA Task Force TEVA
Jones Investigation Letter