Text: H.R.1861 — 101st Congress (1989-1990)All Information (Except Text)

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HR 1861 IH
101st CONGRESS
1st Session
 H. R. 1861
To provide to employees of Government contractors protection against reprisal
for disclosure to an appropriate Government official of information which the
employee reasonably believes evidences misconduct relating to the contract
with the Government.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
April 12, 1989
Mrs. SCHROEDER (for herself, Mr. PENNY, Ms. OAKAR, Mrs. COLLINS, Mr. DYMALLY,
Mr. AUCOIN, Mr. FASCELL, Mr. FAUNTROY, Mr. LELAND, Mr. STARK, Mr. TRAXLER,
Mr. GARCIA, Mr. RAHALL, Mr. CAMPBELL of Colorado, Mr. RANGEL, Mr. OWENS of
Utah, Mr. BRYANT, Mr. ESPY, Mr. YATES, Mr. WOLPE, Mr. EVANS, Mr. HUGHES,
Mr. BATES, Mr. BENNETT, Mr. HAYES of Illinois, Mr. SIKORSKI, Mr. WISE,
Mr. SMITH of Florida, Mr. MARTINEZ, Mr. CLINGER, Mr. KLECZKA, Mr. GLICKMAN,
Mrs. BOXER, Mr. LIPINSKI, and Mr. TORRES) introduced the following bill;
which was referred to the Committee on Education and Labor
A BILL
To provide to employees of Government contractors protection against reprisal
for disclosure to an appropriate Government official of information which the
employee reasonably believes evidences misconduct relating to the contract
with the Government.
  Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
  States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
  This Act may be cited as the `Government Contractor Whistleblower Protection
  Act of 1989'.
SEC. 2. PROHIBITED ACTS.
  It shall be unlawful for a Government contractor to discharge or otherwise
  discriminate against any employee with respect to such employee's
  compensation or terms and conditions of employment because the employee
  (or any person acting pursuant to a request of the employee) discloses to
  an appropriate Government official information concerning the contract
  between the Government contractor and the Government agency which the
  employee reasonably believes evidences--
  (1) a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or
  (2) mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a
  substantial and specific danger to public health or safety.
SEC. 3. COMPLAINT, FILING AND NOTIFICATION.
  (a) FILING OF COMPLAINT- Any employee who believes that he or she has been
  discharged or otherwise discriminated against by any Government contractor
  in violation of section 2 may file (or have any person file on behalf of
  the complainant) a complaint with the Secretary alleging such discharge
  or discrimination. Any such complaint may not be filed more than 30 days
  after the date on which the violation is alleged to have occurred or to have
  been discovered. Upon receipt of such complaint, the Secretary shall serve
  notice of the complaint on the Government contractor named in the complaint
  and the head of the Government agency which entered into the contract.
  (b) INVESTIGATION; ISSUANCE OF ORDERS- (1) Upon receipt of a complaint
  filed under subsection (a), the Secretary shall investigate the alleged
  violation. Within 30 days after receipt of such complaint, the Secretary
  shall complete such investigation and shall provide written notice of
  the results of the investigation to the complainant, any person acting on
  behalf of the complainant, and the Government contractor alleged to have
  committed such violation.
  (2) Within 90 days after receipt of such complaint, the Secretary shall
  issue an order providing the relief prescribed in subsection (c) or denying
  the complaint, unless the proceeding on the complaint is terminated by
  the Secretary on the basis of a settlement agreement entered into by the
  Secretary and the Government contractor alleged to have committed such
  violation.
  (3) An order of the Secretary shall be made on the record after notice
  and opportunity for public hearing.
  (4) The Secretary may not enter into a settlement agreement terminating
  a proceeding on a complaint without the participation and consent of
  the complainant.
  (c) RELIEF- If, in response to a complaint filed under subsection (a),
  the Secretary determines that a violation of section 2 has occurred,
  the Secretary--
  (1) shall order the Government contractor who committed such violation to
  take affirmative action to abate the violation;
  (2) shall order such contractor to reinstate the complainant to the position
  held by such individual when discharged, together with the compensation
  (including back pay), employment benefits, and other terms and conditions
  of his or her employment;
  (3) shall order such contractor to provide compensatory damages to the
  complainant; and
  (4) shall assess against such contractor (at the request of the complainant)
  a sum equal to the aggregate amount of all costs and expenses (including
  attorneys' fees and expert witnesses' fees) reasonably incurred by the
  complainant for, or in connection with, bringing the complaint on which
  the order was issued, as determined by the Secretary.
SEC. 4. REVIEW AND ENFORCEMENT.
  (a) REVIEW OF THE ORDER- (1) Any person adversely affected or aggrieved
  by an order issued under section 3(b) may obtain review of the order in
  the United States court of appeals for the circuit in which the violation
  alleged in the order occurred. No petition seeking such review may be
  filed more than 60 days after issuance of the Secretary's order. Review
  shall conform to chapter 7 of title 5, United States Code.
  (2) The commencement of proceedings under this subsection shall not,
  unless ordered by the court, operate as a stay of the Secretary's order.
  (b) ORDER NOT SUBJECT TO REVIEW IN OTHER PROCEEDINGS- An order of the
  Secretary with respect to which review could have been obtained under
  subsection (a) shall not be subject to judicial review in any criminal or
  other civil proceeding.
  (c) JUDICIAL ENFORCEMENT SOUGHT BY THE SECRETARY- Whenever a person has
  failed to comply with an order issued under section 3(b), the Secretary may
  file an action for enforcement of such order in the United States district
  court for the district in which the violation was found to have occurred. In
  any action brought under this subsection, the court may grant appropriate
  relief, including injunctive relief, and compensatory and exemplary damages.
  (d) JUDICIAL ENFORCEMENT SOUGHT BY PRIVATE PARTY- (1) Any employee on whose
  behalf an order is issued under section 3(b) may commence a civil action
  against the person to whom such order was issued to require compliance
  with such order. The appropriate United States district court may enforce
  such order.
  (2) The court, in enforcing any final order under this subsection, may
  award costs of litigation (including reasonable attorneys' fees and expert
  witnesses' fees) to any party whenever the court determines such award
  is appropriate.
  (e) MANDAMUS PROCEEDING- Any nondiscretionary duty imposed by this Act
  shall be enforceable in a mandamus proceeding brought under section 1361
  of title 28, United States Code.
SEC. 5. DEFINITIONS.
  As used in this Act--
  (1) the term `appropriate Government official' includes--
  (A) an officer or employee of a Government agency with which a Government
  contractor has entered into a contract;
  (B) a Member of Congress or an officer or employee of Congress, the
  General Accounting Office, the Congressional Budget Office, or the Office
  of Technology Assessment; and
  (C) any other officer or employee of the United States whose duties include
  the investigation or enforcement of any law, rule, or regulation relating
  to Government procurement or the subject matter of the contract;
  (2) the term `Government agency' means any executive agency as defined in
  section 105 of title 5, United States Code, or the United States Postal
  Service or the Postal Rate Commission;
  (3) the term `Government contractor' means any employer providing goods
  or services, under contract, to a Government agency; and
  (4) the term `Secretary' means the Secretary of Labor.
SEC. 6. EFFECTIVE DATE.
  This Act shall apply to any action by a Government contractor in violation
  of section 2 which occurs on or after the date of enactment of this Act.