Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Judge Approves Hiring NECC Consultant
By Walter F. Roche Jr.
A federal bankruptcy judge Tuesday approved the hiring of a consultant to provide continued assistance in the liquidation of the drug compounding firm blamed for a nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak.
U.S. Judge Henry J. Boroff approved the hiring of Stephen B. Darr of Huron Consulting to assist in the liquidation of the New England Compounding Center. The hiring has been requested by Paul D.Moore who served as trustee during the NECC bankruptcy and is now overseeing the liquidation.
Darr will be paid $425 an hour for his services.
The approval came during a late afternoon session before Boroff.
Boroff delayed till October action on the request of a California woman to file an admittedly late claim in the bankruptcy proceedings. Lidia Tashima, who said she was sickened by an NECC drug at a Visalia, Calif. health clinic in 2012, said through her attorney that she never received notice of a Jan. 15, 2014 deadline for filing claims.
Boroff continued the hearing on her request to Oct. 14.
In requesting Darr's hiring, Moore said the consultant had previously work on the bankruptcy while employed at Mesirow Financial Consulting, which will continue to provide services.
He cited Darr's "diverse experience and extensive knowledge in the field of bankruptcy and taxation."
Moore said Darr will be paid at the same rate as he was at Mesirow and not his new rate of $825 an hour at Huron. The approval is retroactive to May 15.
Under the liquidation plan previously approved by Boroff more than $200 million is expected to be available for victims and creditors of NECC. State and federal regulators have concluded that NECC was responsible for shipping thousands of fungus tainted vials of a spinal steroid to health facilities across the country.
The 2012 outbreak of fungal meningitis sickened 778 patients, killing 76 of them.