Can't get you out of my head | A probe in Portland is tacking on to Uber’s rap sheet. An investigation found that when the company opened up shop there three years ago, they didn’t quite have the necessary permits. Instead of waiting to operate legally, Uber created a software that blocked and cancelled rides from users with cards that might have been linked to the government or who were physically near enforcement agencies. Dara Khosrowshahi’s first 100 days keep looking better and better.
Reverse the curse | KPMG is catching some serious heat in relation to the now-famous Gupta family. According to allegations, the auditing firm turned a blind eye, as the South African family laundered taxpayer coins into their purse to fund a private wedding with the help of KPMG. As if that weren’t enough, it seems the company might also be at the center of a smear campaign that took down the former finance minister, who also happened to be an avid (and loud) opponent of the Guptas. Shady.
Foot in mouth disease | Last month Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin’s wife cause a social media firestorm when she got snarky on Insta’ about what being privileged really means, saying, “Adorable! Do you think the U.S. govt paid for our honeymoon or personal travel?! Lololol.” Not for lack of trying, apparently. Turns out the couple put in a request to use a govt. plane on their honeymoon to Europe, which would have cost the taxpayers roughly $25,000 per hour. The request was eventually retracted, but it still has some officials (and everyone else watching) raising eyebrows. Lololol.
(Didn't) do the right thing | As the dust settles around the areas recently affected by the hurricanes, regulatory agencies are turning a keen eye to companies that should have been better prepared. This week, the EPA opened up an investigation into the Arkema chemical plant after flooding from Harvey caused containers to burst into flames and explode. As a rule of thumb (and federal law) companies like Arkema need to have a Risk Management Plan (RMP) in place to respond to emergency situations like natural disasters, but the EPA isn’t so sure they followed those blueprints correctly. Arkema said, “Not true” and that their employees “did everything in their power” to comply with the RPM, but the Agency is standing by the investigation, stating the need to assure accountability.
Get it together | For all the efforts Floridians took to prepare for Irma, one nursing home is under fire for a serious lack of standards. 8 patients in the care of the facility died after the storm, a tragedy officials say could have been prevented if the operators had actually met federal and state regulations. This year alone they were cited for 11 health deficiencies, up from 17 last year. This week Governor Rick Scott gave the final call to shut down the nursing home, although considering the 2-star rating and serious dings against the facility and operations following yearly audits, maybe 8 deaths could have been prevented. Just saying.
Thanks for reading! Keep your eyes glued to this column for another roundup of the latest news from the wider world of compliance. And as always, please send any questions, comments, or leads to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A previous version of this article incorrectly cited Rick Perry as the Govenor of Florida.
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