Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm joined the growing list of Biden administration officials to receive ethics waivers on a potential conflict of interest regarding stock shares or a previous lobbying job, according to reports.
Environment & Energy Publishing reports, “Granholm received an Office of Government Ethics waiver that could set the stage for her to divest more than 240,000 shares in an electric bus company,” according to recently made available disclosure forms.
The certificate from the Ethics office is dated last Friday, May 7, to sell over 240,000 shares of Proterra Inc., which comes as a conflict of interest with her current position. Proterra Inc. “is one of the nation’s largest electric bus manufacturers.” The conflict of interest comes as Granholm and the Biden administration currently are “pushing to move the nation toward electric transportation.”
The report says, “certificate enables her to unload her financial stake with a deferral on any capital gains taxes” as long as the money is “reinvested into a ‘permitted property’ within 60 days.”
Reports show earlier this year, the company declared its plans to go public in a nontraditional initial public offering through a merger with a company called ArcLight Clean Transition Corp. The merger has yet to be finalized, but reports show the payday could be very profitable for stockholders, though the merger could be completed within the first half of the year.
The Energy Department spokesman told E&E News, “The form is a likely precursor of an impending sell-off, although not an indication one has occurred.” The report noted, “Granholm and Deputy Secretary David Turk are set to appear before the White House press corps this afternoon to update the country on DOE activities related to the ransomware attack on the Colonial pipeline.”
The report claimed the Secretary had been involved with the electric bus company since 2017 when she joined the company’s board of directors.
E&E News further reports, “She vowed to step down from the company and divest her financial interests within the allotted 180 days following her swearing-in.” Additionally, during her Senate confirmation process, the conflict of interest hardly came up, except for a few Republicans who mentioned the issue revolving around President Joe Biden’s virtual tour of the company’s Greenville, S.C. plant, which happened last month.
The Energy Department denied to E&E News they had any type of involvement regarding the planning of that virtual tour when complaints about the Secretary’s ties hovered over her.
Previously reported by Breitbart News, the Biden administration has been requesting parts of his staff and political appointees to be excluded from ethics rules that bar them from being lobbied by unions, as Biden is keen on hiring union bosses on his staff. The report noted, Biden has relied heavily on labor union rank and file to fill vacancies within his administration.
Biden gave the unions a huge voice within the federal bureaucracy “at the cost of strictly adhering to his own stringent ethical standards,” the report claimed. This, in turn, helps drive policy in their favor.
The report further detailed ethics rules which officials asked to be waived multiple times in the beginning months of the administration. President of the Job Creators Network (JCN) Alfredo Ortiz also told Axios, “It’s no surprise that President Biden’s union boss appointments have resulted in anti-worker policies like the PRO Act and the $15 minimum wage.”
More so, in early May it was reported John Kerry, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, disclosed millions of dollars in income from finance and energy firms along with his recently liquidated huge stock portfolio in his latest financial filing, which Axios obtained after the White House reportedly slow-walked releasing for weeks.
This was due to him liquidating a huge stock portfolio before becoming Biden’s special climate envoy, the report states. The “millions of dollars in salary” he had also reported partially came from $5 million salaries from Bank of America, $382,400 in speaking fees from entities including Deutsche Bank, Waste Management, and Cornell University, and included more than $5,000” for speeches, one of which was to Barclays.
Breitbart News also previously reported on other Biden officials who served in the Obama White House and made millions of dollars when they returned to the private sector.