Complying with the notice requirements set out in Civil Service Law §75-b, the so-called Whistleblower Statute
Tipaldo claimed that shortly after filing his report with the Inspector General, the Defendants retaliated against him by excluding him from meetings, removing him from supervising and managing several projects, and publicly making negative comments about him. Subsequently Tipaldo was removed from his then position of Acting Assistant Commissioner for Planning and Engineering and demoted. He initiated this action in 1997 pursuant to Civil Service Law §75-b, alleging that he was retaliated against for reporting improper governmental activity. He sought “a permanent injunction, reinstatement, all lost compensation, punitive damages, attorney's fees, and costs.”
Tipaldo appealed and the Appellate Division reversed the lower court’s ruling and granted Tipaldo's motion for summary judgment, stating, "[t]here is no dispute that retaliatory actions were taken against plaintiff, and although a cause of action pursuant to the subject statute requires plaintiff to have first reported the alleged violation to the internal [DOT] 'appointing authority,' here, that was defendants." The court determined that "plaintiff's good faith efforts in the manner and filing of his reporting, first informally to his immediate supervisors, and then soon thereafter to the [DOI], satisfactorily met the requirements of Civil Service Law §75-b (2)."