Rep. Charbbonneau’s SB 394 allows anonymous reporting of malfeasance by a public official. It also creates a private right of action by employees of non-state entities if they are retaliated against by their employer for making such a report of malfeasance (either because they didn’t report anonymously or they were found out, I guess.) Damages may include, among other things double the back wages. For some reason, pursuant to a committee amendment, state employees are excluded from this protection.
The intent of these anti-retaliation provisions is obviously good, a lot of retaliation allegations (in various contexts) get made by crappy employees who were fired because they weren’t good at their jobs. For example, if you’re a bad employee who catches wind of a termination coming, why not file a report with the State Board of Accounts talking trash about your boss? It’s a two-fer: you might get the SBOA to hassle your boss, and you might set yourself up for a lawsuit.
I’d recommend two additional amendments: first require that the allegations of malfeasance be well founded as a prerequisite to the retaliation claim, and second, provide for attorneys fees to the defendant where the allegations of retaliation are not made in good faith.