ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland General Assembly has approved a measure aimed at stopping fraud and abuse in state and local government.

The House of Delegates gave final approval to the bill on Wednesday on an 82-56 vote, sending it to Gov. Larry Hogan.

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The measure is designed to help whistleblowers and encourage them to tell the government about fraud committed by private contractors.

Whistleblowers would receive a portion of funds recovered through litigation they help start. They also would be protected against on-the-job retaliation.

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The state currently has a limited version of the false claims law. It applies to cases of Medicaid and health-care related fraud.

The bill was a priority of Attorney General Brian Frosh.

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