Whistleblower Protections for Employees of Recipients of Stimulus Money

The McCaskill Amendment to the economic stimulus bill passed by the Federal Congress on February 12, 2009, includes new whistleblower protections for employees of recipients of the stimulus money. The protections ensure that employees of private contractors and state and local governments and other non-Federal employers can blow the whistle on a covered employer that receives a contract, grant or other payment from the stimulus bill. The protection covers disclosures to a person with supervisory authority over the employee, a State or Federal regulatory or law enforcement agency, a member of Congress, a court or grand jury, the head of a Federal agency, or an inspector general. The disclosure must be something that the employee reasonably believes shows gross mismanagement; gross waste of stimulus funds; a substantial and specific danger to public or health or safety related to the implementation or use of stimulus funds; an abuse of authority related to the implementation or use of stimulus funds; or a violation of law, rule or regulation that governs an agency contract or grant related to stimulus funds.