2014 Arkansas Code
Title 21 - Public Officers and Employees
Chapter 1 - General Provisions
Subchapter 6 - Arkansas Whistle-Blower Act
§ 21-1-602 - Definitions.

AR Code § 21-1-602 (2014) What's This?

As used in this subchapter:

(1) "Adverse action" means to discharge, threaten, or otherwise discriminate or retaliate against a public employee in any manner that affects the employee's employment, including compensation, job location, rights, immunities, promotions, or privileges;

(2) (A) "Appropriate authority" means:

(i) A state, county, or municipal government department, agency, or organization having jurisdiction over criminal law enforcement, regulatory violations, professional conduct or ethics, or waste; or

(ii) A member, officer, agent, investigator, auditor, representative or supervisory employee of the body, agency, or organization.

(B) "Appropriate authority" includes, but is not limited to, the office of the Attorney General, the office of the Auditor of State, the Arkansas Ethics Commission, the Legislative Joint Auditing Committee and the Division of Legislative Audit, and the offices of the various prosecuting attorneys having the power and duty to investigate criminal law enforcement, regulatory violations, professional conduct or ethics, or waste;

(3) "Communicate" means to give a verbal or written report to an appropriate authority;

(4) (A) "Public employee" means a person who performs a full or part-time service for wages, salary, or other remuneration for a public employer.

(B) "Public employee" includes without limitation a state employee under ยง 21-1-610;

(5) "Public employer" means any of the following:

(A) An agency, department, board, commission, division, office, bureau, council, authority, or other instrumentality of the State of Arkansas, including the offices of the various Arkansas elected constitutional officers and the General Assembly and its agencies, bureaus, and divisions;

(B) A state-supported college, university, technical college, community college, or other institution of higher education or department, division, or agency of a state institution of higher education;

(C) The Supreme Court, the Court of Appeals, the Administrative Office of the Courts, the circuit courts, and prosecuting attorneys' offices;

(D) An office, department, commission, council, agency, board, bureau, committee, corporation, or other instrumentality of a county government or a municipality or a district court, a county subordinate service district, a municipally owned utility, or a regional or joint governing body of one (1) or more counties or municipalities; or

(E) A public school district, school, or an office or department of a public school district in Arkansas;

(6) "Violation" means an infraction or a breach which is not of a merely technical or minimal nature of a state statute or regulation, of a political subdivision ordinance or regulation, or of a code of conduct or code of ethics designed to protect the interest of the public or a public employer;

(7) "Waste" means a public employer's conduct or omissions which result in substantial abuse, misuse, destruction, or loss of public funds, property, or manpower belonging to or derived from state or local political subdivision's resources; and

(8) "Whistle-blower" means a person who witnesses or has evidence of a waste or violation while employed with a public employer and who communicates in good faith or testifies to the waste or violation, verbally or in writing, to one of the employee's superiors, to an agent of the public employer, or to an appropriate authority, provided that the communication is made prior to any adverse action by the employer.

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