WHISTLEBLOWER LAW
                 Act of Dec. 12, 1986, P.L. 1559, No. 169             Cl. 43
                                  AN ACT

     Providing protection for employees who report a violation or
        suspected violation of State, local or Federal law; providing
        protection for employees who participate in hearings,
        investigations, legislative inquiries or court actions; and
        prescribing remedies and penalties.

        The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
     hereby enacts as follows:

     Section 1.  Short title.
        This act shall be known and may be cited as the Whistleblower
     Law.
     Section 2.  Definitions.
        The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
     have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
     context clearly indicates otherwise:
        "Appropriate authority."  A Federal, State or local
     government body, agency or organization having jurisdiction over
     criminal law enforcement, regulatory violations, professional
     conduct or ethics, or waste; or a member, officer, agent,
     representative or supervisory employee of the body, agency or
     organization. The term includes, but is not limited to, the
     Office of Attorney General, the Department of the Auditor
     General, the Treasury Department, the General Assembly and
     committees of the General Assembly having the power and duty to
     investigate criminal law enforcement, regulatory violations,
     professional conduct or ethics, or waste.
        "Employee."  A person who performs a service for wages or
     other remuneration under a contract of hire, written or oral,
     express or implied, for a public body.
        "Employer."  A person supervising one or more employees,
     including the employee in question; a superior of that
     supervisor; or an agent of a public body.
        "Good faith report."  A report of conduct defined in this act
     as wrongdoing or waste which is made without malice or
     consideration of personal benefit and which the person making
     the report has reasonable cause to believe is true.
        "Public body."  All of the following:
            (1)  A State officer, agency, department, division,
        bureau, board, commission, council, authority or other body
        in the executive branch of State government.
            (2)  A county, city, township, regional governing body,
        council, school district, special district or municipal
        corporation, or a board, department, commission, council or
        agency.
            (3)  Any other body which is created by Commonwealth or
        political subdivision authority or which is funded in any
        amount by or through Commonwealth or political subdivision
        authority or a member or employee of that body.
        "Waste."  An employer's conduct or omissions which result in
     substantial abuse, misuse, destruction or loss of funds or
     resources belonging to or derived from Commonwealth or political
     subdivision sources.
        "Whistleblower."  A person who witnesses or has evidence of
     wrongdoing or waste while employed and who makes a good faith
     report of the wrongdoing or waste, verbally or in writing, to
     one of the person's superiors, to an agent of the employer or to
     an appropriate authority.
        "Wrongdoing."  A violation which is not of a merely technical
     or minimal nature of a Federal or State statute or regulation,
     of a political subdivision ordinance or regulation or of a code
     of conduct or ethics designed to protect the interest of the
     public or the employer.
     Section 3.  Protection of employees.
        (a)  Persons not to be discharged.--No employer may
     discharge, threaten or otherwise discriminate or retaliate
     against an employee regarding the employee's compensation,
     terms, conditions, location or privileges of employment because
     the employee or a person acting on behalf of the employee makes
     a good faith report or is about to report, verbally or in
     writing, to the employer or appropriate authority an instance of
     wrongdoing or waste.
        (b)  Discrimination prohibited.--No employer may discharge,
     threaten or otherwise discriminate or retaliate against an
     employee regarding the employee's compensation, terms,
     conditions, location or privileges of employment because the
     employee is requested by an appropriate authority to participate
     in an investigation, hearing or inquiry held by an appropriate
     authority or in a court action.
     Section 4.  Remedies.
        (a)  Civil action.--A person who alleges a violation of this
     act may bring a civil action in a court of competent
     jurisdiction for appropriate injunctive relief or damages, or
     both, within 180 days after the occurrence of the alleged
     violation.
        (b)  Necessary showing of evidence.--An employee alleging a
     violation of this act must show by a preponderance of the
     evidence that, prior to the alleged reprisal, the employee or a
     person acting on behalf of the employee had reported or was
     about to report in good faith, verbally or in writing, an
     instance of wrongdoing or waste to the employer or an
     appropriate authority.
        (c)  Defense.--It shall be a defense to an action under this
     section if the defendant proves by a preponderance of the
     evidence that the action by the employer occurred for separate
     and legitimate reasons, which are not merely pretextual.
        (d)  Civil service employees.--An employee covered by civil
     service who contests a civil service action, believing it to be
     motivated by his having made a good faith report, verbally or in
     writing, of an instance of wrongdoing or waste, may submit as
     admissible evidence any or all material relating to the action
     as whistleblower and to the resulting alleged reprisal.
     Section 5.  Enforcement.
        A court, in rendering a judgment in an action brought under
     this act, shall order, as the court considers appropriate,
     reinstatement of the employee, the payment of back wages, full
     reinstatement of fringe benefits and seniority rights, actual
     damages or any combination of these remedies. A court may also
     award the complainant all or a portion of the costs of
     litigation, including reasonable attorney fees and witness fees,
     if the court determines that the award is appropriate.
     Section 6.  Penalties.
        A person who, under color of an employer's authority,
     violates this act shall be liable for a civil fine of not more
     than $500. Additionally, except where the person holds an
     elected public office, if the court specifically finds that the
     person, while in the employment of the Commonwealth or a
     political subdivision, committed a violation of this act with
     the intent to discourage the disclosure of criminal activity,
     the court may order the person's suspension from public service
     for not more than six months. A civil fine which is ordered
     under this section shall be paid to the State Treasurer for
     deposit into the General Fund.
     Section 7.  Construction.
        This act shall not be construed to require an employer to
     compensate an employee for participation in an investigation,
     hearing or inquiry held by an appropriate authority, or impair
     the rights of any person under a collective bargaining
     agreement.
     Section 8.  Notice.
        An employer shall post notices and use other appropriate
     means to notify employees and keep them informed of protections
     and obligations under this act.
     Section 9.  Effective date.
        This act shall take effect in 60 days.