Text: H.R.7032 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (10/05/2018)

 
[Congressional Bills 115th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[H.R. 7032 Introduced in House (IH)]

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115th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 7032

 To amend the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 
 to enhance protections for individuals who hold a security clearance 
    and who are subject to whistleblower retaliation, and for other 
                               purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            October 5, 2018

 Mr. Gohmert introduced the following bill; which was referred to the 
              Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
 To amend the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 
 to enhance protections for individuals who hold a security clearance 
    and who are subject to whistleblower retaliation, and for other 
                               purposes.

    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 ``Adam S. Lovinger Whistleblower 
Reprisal Act of 2018''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds the following:
            (1) United States Government employees and contractors who 
        properly and lawfully report gross mismanagement; gross waste 
        of public funds; violation of law, rule, or regulation; abuses 
        of authority; or substantial and specific dangers to public 
        health or safety further the interests of good governance and 
        provide a valuable service to the American public.
            (2) Despite efforts in recent years to protect 
        whistleblowers--specifically, Presidential Policy Directive 19 
        and the codification of certain provisions of the Directive at 
        section 3001(j) of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism 
        Prevention Act of 2004--retaliatory denial, suspension, or 
        revocation of security clearance remains a very real threat for 
        whistleblowers. Government officials can wield this threat with 
        impunity due to the lack of defined penalties for misusing the 
        security clearance system.
            (3) Because those found to have engaged in unlawful 
        whistleblower reprisal are often senior agency officials, and 
        because punishment for such misconduct is, under current law, 
        both undefined and exclusively within the discretion of agency 
        management officials, the retaliator often goes unpunished 
        while the whistleblower is left to pick up the pieces of his or 
        her career, livelihood, and reputation, often after months or 
        years without a paycheck.
            (4) Defining penalties for unlawful whistleblower reprisal 
        in the form of suspension, denial, or revocation of a security 
        clearance, or the recommendation, threat, or furtherance of the 
        same, places those contemplating misusing the security 
        clearance system on notice that such behavior will not be 
        tolerated, serves as a strong deterrent to unlawful 
        retaliation, and ensures appropriate consequences are 
        implemented when necessary. The Whistleblower Protection Act of 
        1989, which covers all reprisal except that pertaining to 
        security clearances, has for many years done precisely that. 
        The lack of penalty congruence between the Whistleblower 
        Protection Act and section 3001(j) of the Intelligence Reform 
        and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004, is inexplicable, 
        unwarranted, and remedied by this Act.
            (5) This Act recognizes that the suspension, denial, or 
        revocation of security clearance often has an even more 
        insidious impact on a whistleblower than other forms of 
        retaliation due to the inherent stigma of national security 
        risk it carries.

SEC. 3. PENALTIES FOR RETALIATORY ACTION AGAINST WHISTLEBLOWER WHO HOLD 
              A SECURITY CLEARANCE.

    (a) In General.--Section 3001(j)(4) of the Intelligence Reform and 
Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (50 U.S.C. 3341(j)(4)) is amended by 
adding at the end the following:
                    ``(D) Penalties for reprisals.--(i) Upon a finding 
                by an inspector general of an agency or the Inspector 
                General of the Intelligence Community that an officer 
                or employee of an agency directed, recommended, or 
                materially furthered a reprisal prohibited by paragraph 
                (1), the officer or employee shall be subject to one or 
                more of the following adverse actions, as determined by 
                the head of the employing agency:
                                    ``(I) A suspension from duty 
                                without pay for a period of at least 14 
                                days.
                                    ``(II) A reduction in grade.
                                    ``(III) Revocation of security 
                                clearance.
                                    ``(IV) Removal from the Federal 
                                service.
                                    ``(V) Referral to the Office of 
                                Personnel Management for debarment from 
                                the Federal service for a period not to 
                                exceed 10 years.
                    ``(ii) For purposes of carrying out clause (i), an 
                officer or employee materially furthered a reprisal if 
                the officer or employee knew, or reasonably should have 
                known, that the action was a reprisal prohibited by 
                paragraph (1).''.
    (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall 
take effect on the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment 
of this Act.
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