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110th Congress                                             Rept. 110-42
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                     Part 2




                 March 12, 2007.--Ordered to be printed


  Mr. Waxman, from the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, 
                        submitted the following

                          SUPPLEMENTAL REPORT

                             together with

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 985]

                          Legislative History

    In the section labeled ``Legislative History'', amend the 
last sentence to read as follows:
    ``The Committee held a markup to consider H.R. 985 on 
February 14, 2007, and ordered the bill to be reported, as 
amended, by a rollcall vote of 28-0.''

         Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives

    Amend the Statement of General Performance Goals and 
Objectives section to read as follows:
          ``In accordance with clause 3(c)(4) of Rule XIII of 
        the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
        Committee's performance goals and objectives are 
        reflected in the descriptive portions of this report 
        including extending whistleblower protections to 
        federal employees who work on national security issues; 
        strengthening whistleblower rights for federal 
        contractors; ensuring that employees of the 
        Transportation Security Agency (TSA), in particular its 
        baggage screeners, have whistleblower rights; providing 
        explicit protections for federal employees who report 
        instances where federal research is suppressed or 
        distorted for political reasons; overrides several 
        court and administrative decisions that undermined 
        existing whistleblower protections; and providing 
        whistleblowers access to federal district courts if the 
        Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) or the Inspector 
        General (IG) does not take action on their claims 
        within 180 days.''

                         Earmark Identification

    Amend the language in the Earmark Identification section to 
read as follows:
          ``H.R. 985 does not contain any congressional 
        earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff 
        benefits as defined in clause 9(d), 9(e), or 9(f) of 
        rule XXI.''

                            Additional Views


    During the 109th Congress, the Committee approved 
legislation sponsored by Rep. Todd Platts (R-PA) to modernize, 
clarify, and expand the federal employee whistleblower 
protection laws. This legislation served as the basis for the 
whistleblower legislation introduced by Chairman Waxman as H.R. 
985 during the 110th Congress.
    Although H.R. 985 was reported by the Committee 
unanimously, I would like to take this opportunity to express 
my concern about two specific provisions in the bill.
    First, language was included by amendment during Committee 
consideration that would allow for all circuits review of 
federal employee whistleblower complaints. This was not 
included in the bipartisan legislation approved by the 
Committee last year and it was not included in the version of 
H.R. 985 that was introduced, legislation that I cosponsored. 
My concern is that, with this new language allowing federal 
employees to appeal district court decisions to all circuits 
rather than the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, we will lose 
any semblance of order regarding the consideration of federal 
employee whistleblower claims by the courts. For example, by 
allowing all appellate courts to hear appeals, a disclosure by 
a Border Patrol agent in Texas could be protected by a 
different set of standards than the disclosure of a Border 
Patrol agent in Maine. As such, the potential for disparity is 
worse than the disease this legislation is attempting to cure.
    Second, language was included during Committee 
consideration that would grant whistleblower protections to 
those conducting federally funded research. My concern is that 
this amendment would turn legitimate scientific disagreement 
into a litigated personnel issue. Besides the fact that this 
measure would likely serve to chill legitimate scientific 
debate, I am not convinced that it belongs in a bill designed 
to protect Federal workers who expose waste, fraud or abuse.
                                   Tom Davis.