Falcons GM Dimitroff homeschools for a most important draft
Now that it is mandated that he work from home, Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff has not cleared out such luxuries as a bed or a kitchen sink to make room for the oversized draft board. He hasn’t broken any neighborhood covenants by parking a CIA-surplus satellite truck in the driveway as a backup in case the internet goes out. Not yet anyway.Earlier this week Dimitroff uprooted his laptop during a media video conference and conducted a quick tour of where he’ll help mold the Falcons’ future come April 23-25.Draft Central appeared to be a room off his home office that consisted of a co...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Senators want details from Amazon on firing of New York coronavirus protest organizer
Was Christian Smalls fired from Amazon for violating a quarantine or because he helped organize a walkout to protest safety conditions at a New York warehouse where employees had been diagnosed with COVID-19?Five U.S. senators sent Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos a series of questions in a letter Wednesday focusing on Smalls’ dismissal, which he and other politicians, as well as union leaders, have described as retaliation.Seattle-based Amazon has repeatedly insisted Smalls was fired “for putting the health and safety of others at risk and violations of his terms of his employment,” as company spokeswom...
The Seattle Times
Former Venezuelan attorney general implicated in US bribery case in Miami
MIAMI — A former Venezuelan attorney general has been implicated in a major U.S. corruption case accusing a one-time oil contractor of using South Florida banks to funnel bribes to her to block criminal charges against his companies in Venezuela.Although the former high-ranking official is not named in a Miami criminal case, sources familiar with the U.S. investigation say Luisa Ortega Diaz is “Venezuela Official 1” in a charging document and is suspected of accepting bribes from Carlos Enrique Urbano Fermin. His companies did business with subsidiaries of the national oil company, PDVSA, and ...
Commentary: COVID-19 'Shock Doctrine' has begun
In some places, the need for a collective response to the coronavirus crisis is bringing out the best of humanity, as people and mutual aid groups work to help and protect others.Unfortunately, some people are already using this crisis to push through devastating changes that will enrich polluters and harm public health.Take the $2 trillion relief package Congress passed to provide emergency aid to people and businesses facing an economic downturn from the crisis.There are commendable elements of the bill, such as its expansion of unemployment benefits and its direct cash payments. But while o...
Tribune News Service
The feds fell short on PPE, so everyday Americans stepped up
States are desperate for medical supplies, governors are pleading with the federal government to secure dwindling lifesaving equipment, and the number of novel coronavirus cases continues to rise nationally.But emerging from this crisis has been a widespread effort by small businesses, university labs and everyday Americans to create personal protective equipment for vulnerable health care professionals who are keeping patients alive and fighting the contagion.In Illinois, many manufacturers are retooling to make essential medical supplies for local hospitals: N95 masks, hand sanitizer and sec...
ICE says it will review cases for release nationwide as the coronavirus spreads at San Diego detention center
SAN DIEGO — As the number of confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus creeps up at Otay Mesa Detention Center, the agency responsible for immigration detention has announced that it will review detainees for release because of health conditions believed to place people at higher risk.But for some high-risk detainees, that may be too late because of the way people in custody are grouped under quarantine.The facility holds detainees in immigration custody for Immigration and Customs Enforcement as well as inmates for federal criminal cases for the U.S. Marshals Service.There are at least six ICE...
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Former Outcome Health execs can't access $10.3 million in frozen funds to pay lawyers, judge rules
Former Outcome Health CEO Rishi Shah and former president Shradha Agarwal wanted to access $10.3 million the government froze as part of a $1 billion fraud case playing out in Chicago federal court. A federal judge has denied the request.Judge Thomas Durkin ruled Wednesday that the money was “indisputably derived” from Agarwal and Shah’s alleged fraud, and therefore would remain frozen.Court documents filed by the former executives’ attorneys in February listed Shah and Agarwal’s assets and argued they cannot pay their attorneys’ fees without the frozen $10.3 million. Shah and Agarwal need “at...
McDonald's executives take pay cuts as COVID-19 pandemic causes March sales to plunge
CHICAGO — McDonald’s president and CEO Chris Kempczinski will cut his base salary by half as restaurant sales plunged last month due to COVID-19, the fast food giant said Wednesday in a regulatory filing.Sales declined significantly starting mid-March as many governments instituted stay-at-home orders and banned restaurants from dine-in service. While 99% of McDonald’s restaurants in the U.S. remain open for delivery, drive-thru and pickup, globally only 75% remain open in some capacity as a result of complete closures in several markets including Italy, France and Spain.Sales at U.S. restaura...
Groupon furloughs sales staff amid coronavirus pandemic
CHICAGO — Groupon is furloughing “significant portions” of its sales and sales operations teams in North America as the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic hits the Chicago-based daily deals site.The company, which launched more than 11 years ago with a two-for-one pizza deal at a Chicago bar, was already facing obstacles. It ousted its CEO last month after reporting a disappointing fourth-quarter performance and plans to reduce costs.Those cost-reduction efforts will not be enough, Groupon’s interim CEO Aaron Cooper said in a Monday email to employees. Cooper announced the job cuts in...
Sen. Kelly Loeffler says she will stop trading stocks in individual companies
ATLANTA — U.S. Sen. Kelly Loeffler says she will no longer invest in stocks for individual companies, an attempt to push past the criticism she faces about transactions made on her behalf during the coronavirus pandemic.Loeffler made the announcement in an opinion piece published by the Wall Street Journal. In it, she blames backlash to her recent investment decisions on political opponents and the media. She said her and her husband’s wealth, expected to surpass $500 million, will now be invested in funds that are not tied to the performance of a single company.“… I am taking action to move b...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution