worked

Before Contractor Billed TARC For No Work, She Worked For MSD Director

A scathing report released last week revealed widespread misspending and sexual misconduct at Louisville’s public transit agency. Much of the report focused on then-executive director Ferdinand Risco’s relationship with a contractor who was paid more than $228,000 for no demonstrable work. 

That contractor previously worked for another top city official: Tony Parrott, the executive director of the Louisville Metropolitan Sewer District. When he worked in Cincinnati, Parrott paid the same contractor $3 million over five years, a deal one city councilman at the time called “unconscionable.” 

This is not a coincidence: Parrott introduced the contractor to Risco.

The referral came just months after an Ohio state audit revealed Parrott had misspent more than $750,000 on bloated, often unnecessary contracts during his time running Cincinnati MSD.

Risco was fired in February after sexual assault and harassment allegations from staff came to light.

The contractor that worked with Risco at TARC was not named in the report because she has accused him of sexual assault. But her attorney confirmed her identity, and the report makes it fairly clear who she is: the same woman who Parrott worked with closely for over a decade in Cincinnati. 

In a brief response to emailed questions, Parrott downplayed his role in connecting Risco and the contractor, saying it was simply a referral. He did not offer more details on why he would refer this specific contractor to TARC, or what services he thought she would be best suited to provide. 

Jean Porter, a spokesperson for Mayor Greg Fischer, also dismissed the concern, saying Parrott advised Fischer’s office that all he did was introduce Risco and the contractor at a “water equity task force meeting” years ago.

But the contractor told TARC investigators that Parrott was the one who initially reached out to her about an

Continue Reading

She thought they were renovating the kitchen, he worked with a Seattle company on a bigger surprise

30 years into their marriage and nearly 20 years in the same house, Alvin and Joanne were ready for a refresh — not the marriage, Alvin emphasizes.

“It doesn’t feel like it’s been that long! We still feel like newlyweds who got married yesterday,” he says.

But the house was starting to feel a little dated, and the couple heard from a friend that Granite Transformations did really great work. As a former interior designer Joanne took the lead on most decisions, and then Alvin came up with a plan to celebrate their love at the same time.

“I said honey, I don’t think we can afford to do all this, and convinced her to postpone the fireplace and bathroom renovations. But of course in my head I thought ‘I’m going to make sure we get this done.”

Alvin worked with Granite Transformations to orchestrate a surprise, and they completed the bathroom and fireplace renovations while Joanne was away working as a flight attendant.

“The crew from Granite Transformations were great about working on the surprise. They’d bring paperwork to the school where I volunteer, separated invoices to keep things secret — things like that.”

Gorgeous transformation

Alvin emphasizes that his wife was the decision-maker for all the gorgeous design details, and he just said, ‘yes dear.’ But if he didn’t know her preferences, how did he pull together the surprise?

“The fireplace matches the marbled countertops in the kitchen, so that was a no-brainer,” Alvin says, and Joanne had already started to pick things out for the bathroom before they put the project on hold. “I said why don’t you put all your top picks in the folder for later on? And then I took all that to Granite Transformations.”

FURTHER READING: Your easy-clean kitchen never looked so good!

Continue Reading

A secretive company that’s worked with Airbnb, Amazon, and Apple reportedly has a history of charging contractors to work for its corporate clients



a man sitting in front of a computer: A man works at a computer with a headset. Badias/Andia/Universal Images Group via Getty Images


© Provided by Business Insider
A man works at a computer with a headset. Badias/Andia/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

  • A customer service firm used by the likes of Apple, Amazon, Airbnb, and more has a history of exploiting the remote gig workers it recruits, according to a new ProPublica report.
  • Arise Virtual Solutions, which serves as a contractor to staff customer support teams, has seen booming business during the pandemic as it allows large corporations to easily hire and fire the people it contracts.
  • The report paints yet another picture of how workers in the gig economy are left vulnerable to exploitation.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

A customer service firm hired by the likes of Airbnb, Amazon, Apple, and Disney has seen a burgeoning business during the pandemic. But the 25-year-old firm also has a history of worker exploitation, according to a new ProPublica report.

Loading...

Load Error

Arise Virtual Solutions acts as a middleman between gig workers — who, ProPublica reports, are mostly women and people of color — and big companies, pairing the remote customer service workers with large corporate clients. Arise’s clientele includes Amazon, Apple, AT&T, Disney, eBay, Peloton, Virgin Atlantic, and many others, according to the outlet.

The corporations are drawn to Arise’s services in part because of how quickly the firm can hire workers, the report notes. But Arise can also easily fire those customer service agents, without severance or insurance, in what is another example of how rampant worker vulnerability and exploitation can be in the gig economy.

Arise has been hit with federal class-action lawsuits since 2011, with workers alleging federal labor law violations and wrongful treatment of employees. ProPublica viewed hearings, internal documents, corporate contracts, and other records, as well as spoke with multiple agents for its investigation.

The

Continue Reading