Business and corporations in California generally try to make as much money as possible. This is true for both small businesses to major corporations. Generally it is done legitimately and legally, but sometimes these companies will break different rules in order to make even more money. Some people in government agencies do the same thing. It may be done differently, such as misusing various funding on personal activities, but people are still trying to make more money by breaking the rules.
When this occurs, the various regulatory agencies or police want to stop it and usually they need the help of people within the business or government agencies to help them. This is exactly what a former state employee did during an audit of a California tax agency. As a result of the audit the department he was working for was dismantled and reassigned to a different department. The worker who helped was fired after being transferred to the new department and was the only high ranking official to be fired from the new department.
The worker claims that he was fired as whistleblower retaliation for helping with the audit. The main part he helped with was by letting investigators know that a lot of money was being misused for promotional events of certain board members that had little to do with the tax agency.
It is illegal for employers in California to retaliate against employees who participate in investigations or file complaints with law enforcement or regulatory agencies. If employers retaliate against employees for doing this, the employer may be required to pay the employee back pay, reinstate the employee to their position or pay other damages.
There are some employers in California who will do whatever they feel is necessary to make money. Sometimes this includes illegal activity. If an employee reports this activity, the employer cannot retaliate against him or her. If they do, they may be required to compensate that employee. Experienced attorneys understand employee rights and may be able to help protect them.
Source: The Sacramento Bee, "Ousted state worker files claim after alleged threat from tax board member" Adam Ashton, Oct. 24, 2017