President Donald Trump’s appointee to run the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requested that taxpayers cover roughly $47,000 worth of jewelry and other items that were stolen from her while she traveled for work, Politico reported Saturday evening.
The appointee, Seema Verma, reportedly had her luggage stolen from a rented SUV in July 2018 during a trip to San Francisco, where she gave a speech.
Among the items Verma sought reimbursement for were some two dozen pieces of jewelry appraised at $43,065, $2,000 worth of clothes, a $325 moisturizer, $349 noise-cancelling headphones, and an Ivanka Trump-brand pendant valued at $5,900 and made of gold, prasiolite, and diamonds, according to Politico.
Verma reportedly wrote in her claim that none of the jewelry was insured, and that she had had the items appraised by a jeweler several weeks after the theft.
A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Human Services told Politico it was “perfectly appropriate” and not unusual for Verma to file such a claim for stolen property.
“When paying for such goods, the department pays a discounted rate based on age for the items that were lost,” the spokesperson said. “It’s perfectly appropriate that the administrator filed a personal property loss claim for goods stolen while on work travel and this is not an unusual practice for federal employees.”
Regardless, the department only reimbursed her $2,852.40 for the luxury items, the spokesperson told Politico.