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Timnit Gebru, a technical co-lead of Google’s Ethical Artificial Intelligence Team, was fired in early December after an internal battle over a research paper she published focused on ethical problems with the kind of artificial intelligence systems used to understand human language, including the one that powers Google search. Gebru has been vocal about her frustrations with diversity and inclusion at Google, claiming that she felt “constantly dehumanized.” The firing has sparked an #ISupportTimnit campaign started by Google employees calling for the company to commit to research integrity. Google has faced significant criticism recently, for unfair employment practices and D&I, including investigations by the National Labor Relations Board. 

In November, Cal/OSHA adopted a temporary emergency standard, imposing substantial new COVID-19 testing, reporting, and documentation requirements on California employers. The new standard is an apparent over-reach by Cal/OSHA, since it also mandates that employees who are excluded from work for COVID-related reasons continue to receive earnings, seniority, benefits, and a right to reinstatement. The new temporary standard went into effect on November 30, 2020, and will last for 180 days, unless extended. It applies to all California businesses, except for single-employee businesses where the employee has no contact with other people, businesses where employees are working remotely, and businesses such as hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, clinics, medical offices, and other specific health care facilities.

Pasha Law Recommends

Do you need some book, movie, or show recommendations for an upcoming holiday break? Whether you're looking for personal growth or to take a break from the real world, the Pasha Law team has you covered!

Books: The Inner Game of Tennis, by Timothy Gallwey; The Art of Learning, by Joshua Waitzkin; Meditations, by Marcus Aurelius

Shows: Harley Quinn; Sherlock; The Leftovers; The Chef Show

Movies: Waking Life; Columbus

Enjoy!

The US Treasury Department is urging businesses who received a PPP loan to file for loan forgiveness in the wake of a ruling clarifying the tax treatment of expenses paid for with PPP money. Since businesses are not taxed on the proceeds of a forgiven PPP loan, the Treasury Dept ruled that expenses paid from forgiveness loan proceeds are not deductible. If a business 'reasonably believes' their loan will be forgiven at some point in the future, the expenses related to the loan are not tax-deductible even if the business has not yet had their loan forgiven or even filed for forgiveness.

Protect Your Business with an On Demand Legal Team

General Counsel Select is a legal service providing your business with tailored general counsel services to a select demographic of eligible clients. With no hourly fees and for a fixed monthly rate, your business has a dedicated legal team from Pasha Law PC to handle virtually all your legal needs.

Need a contract drafted or reviewed? Need to terminate an employee? Need business legal advice on structuring your business or maintaining regulatory compliance? Whatever your legal needs, General Counsel Select has your business covered, all with a commitment to no hidden fees and no surprise bills.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise moving to Houston, TX

Along with a better-than-expected 4th quarter SEC earnings report, Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced that it will be moving the company headquarters from San Jose, CA to Houston, TX. The move will come in 2022, with the completion of a new state-of-the-art campus. HPE announced it will consolidate offices in California to the existing San Jose headquarters, but the move will not create any layoffs.

After years of increasingly exotic interpretations of already-vague guidelines, the US Department of Transportation recently set forth new rules for airlines regarding service animals. The new rules define a service animal as a dog, “individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability." All other animals must be checked in the cargo hold, generally for a fee. The new rule also allows airlines to place a limit on the number of service animals per passenger to only two, and they must fit within the passenger's foot space. The revised rule will go into effect in Jan. 2021.

7C’s: Cooperation

In regards to our 7 C's value of Cooperation, Attorney Trang Pham says, “The collaboration and cooperation between our team members makes us effective in helping our clients, whether it’s to help meet client goals, solve a client issue, or to effectively help our clients avoid potential issues.”

Apps and the legal implications of running them are a frequent topic in the Pasha Law blog and Legally Sound | Smart Business podcast. Such an episode from last year, on the legal woes facing popular app, GrubHub, over false charges and microsites. Click here to listen: https://www.pashalaw.com/the-dark-side-of-grubhubs-and-others-relationship-with-restaurants/

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