Appeals from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Luzerne County, Jan. T., 1968, No. 1595, in case of Rose Marie Hayes et al. v. City of Wilkes-Barre et al.
Anthony P. Moses, for appellants.
Gifford Cappellini, City Solicitor, with him James F. Geddes, Jr., Assistant City Solicitor, for appellees.
Bell, C. J., Jones, Cohen, Eagen, O'Brien, Roberts and Pomeroy, JJ. Dissenting Opinion by Mr. Justice Roberts. Mr. Chief Justice Bell joins in this opinion.
Judgment affirmed on the authority of Templeton Appeal, 399 Pa. 10, 159 A.2d 725 (1960).
Dissenting Opinion by Mr. Justice Roberts:
Appellants were appointed policewomen by the City Council of Wilkes-Barre in 1964, after having successfully taken the requisite competitive civil service examination and proven themselves otherwise fit for the positions. This action was taken on the basis of a list submitted by the Chairman of the Police Civil Service Board. In January, 1968, the policewomen-appellants
were informed that because of certain irregularities in the 1964 hiring process and the fact that the positions to which they had been appointed had not been validly created, their services were being terminated immediately. At no time was it alleged by the municipal authorities that failure to satisfactorily perform any of the required duties of policewomen played any part in the decision to dismiss the appellants from further employment. Appellants promptly petitioned the court below to reinstate them to their original positions and award them back pay. Their prayer for relief was denied because the trial court understood the irregularities in the hiring process to be fatal to appellants' claim. The majority of this Court by its per curiam order affirms the lower court's decision. From this action, I am compelled to dissent.
From the opinion below, it is clear that the trial judge thought it was crucial for the appellants to "establish by evidence or pleadings the legal existence of the Police Civil Service Board and the necessary rules and regulations thereof" and that City Council followed "the mandate of the Civil Service provisions of the Third Class City Code as to a request to the Board for the four highest names for each vacancy and the nomination from such list." The hearing court reached "this conclusion reluctantly for the record and the pleadings are quite clear that there is no issue in these proceedings as to the competence, performance or diligence of petitioners in the discharge of their duties. It is similarly clear that the defects in the selection process ...