Ms. Lemire was recently appointed as the Independent Consultant in connection with the Consent Order signed by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey regarding municipal bond disclosure requirements.
At a time when infrastructure spending in New York City and New York State is reaching new highs, government efforts to award more public contracts to qualified Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses (MWBEs) is more than aspirational; it is achievable.
According to media analysis of a newly-issued New York State report, a growing number of businesses have been fined for not complying with the State's increasingly toughening contracting requirements for hiring minority- and women-owned business enterprises, or MWBEs.
New SEC rules allow companies to offer and sell securities to retail investors through crowdfunding internet sites. The new measures, now in effect, allow for small startup businesses to raise money through a large volume of low-dollar amounts. Before the rules went into effect in May 2016, federal rules limited these offerings to wealthy investors.
The Panama Papers have exposed enormous money transfers previously concealed from financial regulators in the U.S. and elsewhere. With the assistance of at least one law firm in Panama, a country with loose AML restrictions and bank secrecy laws designed to block inquiries from financial regulators abroad, politically-connected individuals have shielded their identities in moving funds.
New federal rules put a spotlight on real estate cash deals by shell companies. Purchases of high-end real property with significant amounts of cash through the use of a shell corporation can provide cover to facilitate the flow of criminal proceeds.
In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks in Paris and Mali, regulators swiftly outlined measures to curb terrorist financing and money laundering in banks doing business in New York.
In the aftermath of the indictment of FIFA officials, U.S. prosecutors and international regulators have opened probes into potentially related bank fraud. The federal indictment, unsealed in May, charged multiple FIFA officials with money-laundering and other crimes, and also named over two dozen banks that allegedly furthered the scheme by knowingly processing illegal transactions and failing to monitor suspicious activity by FIFA officials and executives.
Rather than risk hefty fines and regulatory backlash, some U.S. banks are moving to close entire branches neighboring the Mexican border. While concerns over human trafficking and the narcotics industry are not new for banks operating in this region, the sharp increase in fines and other penalties have prompted large banks to shut down local branches rather than risk exposure to money laundering violations.
Last week, New York City legislators moved to restrict the use of credit checks on prospective employees. The New York City Council passed the bill with the intent to reduce discriminatory practicing in hiring.