The judge overseeing U.S. cities’ and counties’ lawsuits against makers of opioid painkillerssaid he hopes a sweeping resolution can be worked out by the end ofthe year that will have a “meaningful impact’’ on the burgeoningdrug epidemic.

U.S. District Judge Dan Polster on Tuesday told lawyersrepresenting drugmakers, including Purdue Pharma Inc. and Johnson & Johnson, and governmentsthat he intends to push for a settlement that does more than “justmoves money around.’’

“We have to dramatically reduce the total number of pills outthere, and make sure the pills that are out there are being usedproperly,’’ the Cleveland-based judge said. “We all know a lot ofthose pills have gone walking with devastating results’’--referring to the resale of the drugs on the black market.

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