April 26, 2022. The 2022 theme for Earth Day was “Invest In Our Planet.” The 2021 bipartisan Infrastructure Bill included billions of dollars to invest in remediating how the United States’ transportation infrastructure impacts the planet. Government contractors are bidding for these funds in order to accomplish these projects to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and thereby benefit the environment. Whistleblowers can help ensure government contractors use these funds wisely and in service of the Infrastructure Bill’s larger goals and not to line their own pockets.
Environmental initiatives in the Infrastructure Bill, by the numbers:
- $66 billion for upgrading and modernizing transit systems and replacing mass transit vehicles to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- $7.5 billion to build a national network of electric vehicle chargers
- $5 billion for “decarbonizing the nation’s school bus fleet”
- $17 billion for port infrastructure and $25 billion to airports to modernize and reduce carbon pollution from these transit hubs
- $50 billion to improve the resilience of physical and natural infrastructure against climate change-driven natural disasters
All of these initiatives are intended to combat the deleterious effects of air pollution on humans and the environment. The Clean Air Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is the main law regulating air quality in the United States. Taxpayers Against Fraud notes that to date, “there have been zero successful federal False Claims Act cases related to violations of the Clean Air Act.”
Employees of electric vehicle charging station manufacturers, construction companies, or green vehicle manufacturers who receive Infrastructure Bill funds as part of government contracts have a duty to report if these funds are being misspent. Whistleblowers who report fraud under the False Claims Act may receive 15-25% of the damages that the government recovers. The Department of Justice needs whistleblowers to keep dirty fraud out of clean energy.
If you would like to report government contracting fraud, you can contact attorneys at Tycko & Zavareei LLP. Eva Gunasekera and Renée Brooker are former officials of the United States Department of Justice and prosecuted whistleblower cases under the False Claims Act. Renée served as Assistant Director at the United States Department of Justice, the office that supervises False Claims Act cases in all 94 United States District Courts. Eva was the Senior Counsel for Health Care Fraud. Eva and Renée now represent whistleblowers. For a free consultation, you can contact Renée at [email protected] (tel.: 202-417-3664) or contact Eva Gunasekera at [email protected]. You can also go to Tycko & Zavareei LLP’s website for whistleblowers to learn more at https://www.fraudfighters.net/.