3290 - Protection of Public Employees Reporting of Waste or Violations of the Law
Last updated: July 01, 2007
PREAMBLE: The Idaho Protection of Public Employees Act, Idaho Code 6-2101 through 6-2109, protects public employees from adverse action by their employer for reporting waste of public funds, property, or manpower, and violations of a law, rule or regulations. This policy applies certain provisions of that law to employees of the University of Idaho. It was added in July of 1995 and reflects legislation of 1994. In 2007 changes were made to incorporate the retaliation complaint process in FSH 3810 and clarify that certain actions by employees may be grounds for discipline. Unless otherwise noted, the text is as of July 1996. (ed. 7-00, rev. 7-07)
B. Protected Actions
C. Procedure for Reporting Waste or Violation of Law
A-1. "Adverse action" means to discharge, threaten or otherwise discriminate against an employee in any manner that affects that employee’s employment, including compensation, terms, conditions, location, rights, immunities, promotions or privileges.
B. PROTECTED ACTIONS.
B-1. Idaho Code 6-2101 through 6-2109 protects from adverse action university employees who:
a. Communicate, in good faith, the existence of any waste of public funds, property or manpower, or a violation or suspected violation of a law, rule or regulation; or (rev. 7-07)
b. Participate in, or give information in, an investigation, hearing, court proceeding, legislative or other inquiry, or other form of administrative review; or
c. Object or refuse to carry out a directive that he or she reasonably believes violates a law, rule or regulation adopted under the authority of the state of Idaho or the United States. (ed. 7-00)
C. PROCEDURE FOR REPORTING WASTE OR VIOLATION OF LAW.
C-1. Report of waste of public funds, property or manpower, or a violation or suspected violation of law, rule, or regulation resulting from university operations or the actions of a university employee within the scope and course of employment should be made in writing to the office of Internal Audit, dean of the college, vice president of the division, provost, or president of the university, as deemed appropriate. Reports may also be made using the Confidential Hot Line. (rev. 7-07, 3-13, 12-13)
C-2. The employee or authorized representative is required to make such communication at a time and in a manner that gives the university reasonable opportunity to correct the waste or violation. (rev. 7-07)
C-3. An employee communicates in good faith if there is a reasonable basis in fact for the communication. Good faith is lacking where the employee knew or reasonably ought to have known that the report is malicious, false or frivolous.
D-1. An employee who believes he or she has suffered, or is about to suffer, or has been threatened with, adverse action because of protected actions as set forth in section B-1 above may use the process outlined in FSH 3810 (rev. 7-07)
D-2. The university may discipline an employee who reports waste or violations of law, rules or regulation and who does not file such a report in good faith.
D-3. The university may discipline an employee who threatens to take or takes adverse action against another employee because of that employee's protected actions as set forth in section B-1 above up to and including termination. (rev. 7-07)