Appeal from the order of the Court of Common Pleas of Mercer County, No. 210 September Term, 1970, in case of Gilbert Cooke v. Borough of Greenville and the School District of Greenville.
Anna Belle Jones, with her Stranahan & Stranahan, for appellant.
Michael Halliday, for the Borough of Greenville, appellee.
George Hardy Rowley, with him Voorhies, Dilley, Keck, Rowley & Wallace, for School District of the Borough of Greenville, appellee.
Judges Wilkinson, Jr., Manderino, and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Rogers.
Gilbert Cooke, the tax collector of the Borough of Greenville, contends that certain actions taken by the Borough and School District on February 14, 1969, were legally ineffective to reduce the compensation due him during the term to which he was elected in November, 1969.
This action has been termed by the parties and the trial judge an amicable action. An amicable action is properly commenced by the filing with the prothonotary of a written agreement, which supplies process, service and pleadings. Act of 1836, June 13, P.L. 568, Section 40, 12 P.S. 316; RCP 1007 (3) relating to assumpsit; and, here relevant, RCP 1091, relating to mandamus. Mr. Cooke's purpose is to compel performance by political subdivisions of a public act, to wit, that of paying him the compensation allegedly due by law. In a suit in mandamus, the proper defendants would be the officers of the subdivisions concerned in that duty. RCP 1094(a).
There is not in this record a written agreement for an action; there is only a document entitled "Statement of Facts" bearing a caption as follows: "In the Court of Common Pleas of Mercer County, Pennsylvania, Gilbert Cooke v. Borough of Greenville and School District of Borough of Greenville. 210 Sept. 1970." This document merely recites facts agreed to by the parties, reserving the right to provide testimony and other evidence as to additional facts.
The record contains no statement of the form or cause of action and no demand for relief, although implicit in the Statement of Facts are Mr. Cooke's contention that the political subdivisions had not validly altered the tax collector's compensation and the subdivisions' contention that they had. The court's order made after hearing is: "The action of the Borough of Greenville is affirmed. The ordinance of the Borough of Greenville and the resolution of the School District of the Borough of Greenville is [sic] hereby found to have been properly passed, recorded and advertised and the compensation of the plaintiff, Gilbert Cooke, shall be as set forth therein." The procedures here followed lack sanction of common law, statute or rule of court and the order of the court is appropriate only to a determination
made in response to a petition for ...