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Congressman Tom O´Halleran

Representing the 1st District of Arizona

O’Halleran Offers Amendment to Protect Whistleblowers Disclosing Info on the Improper Use of Aircrafts by Government Officials

October 12, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Tom O’Halleran introduced an amendment to the Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017 to provide greater whistleblower protections to federal employees who disclose information on the improper use of aircrafts by government officials.

In a speech on the floor of the House of Representatives, Congressman Tom O’Halleran said, “I am proud that we are coming together to increase protections for whistleblowers at federal agencies, a long overdue effort. But, in light of recent reports and events that have revealed a disturbing pattern of improper use of tax dollars on air travel by senior federal officials, I believe we must go further.

“My amendment simply extends whistleblower protections that are created under the bill to federal employees who disclose information about travel, including improper use of aircraft,” continued O’Halleran. “Not only would this make it clear to agencies that any violation of laws, rules, or regulations concerning travel or government aircraft is unacceptable – it will also ensure those who come forward to expose any wrongdoing will have appropriate protection from retaliation.”

The amendment failed to pass the House of Representatives on a 190 to 232 vote. 

Earlier this month, Rep. O’Halleran introduced the Taxpayers Don’t Incur Meaningless Expenses (Taxpayers DIME) Act. This bill would prevent government officials from using taxpayer money on private air travel that violates current rules. Additionally, the bill increases transparency and oversight of government travel and calls for the independent Office of Government Ethics (OGE) to report on ways to strengthen existing rules.