Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Erie County at No. 596, September Term, 1967, in case of Mike Yatzor v. Raymond Showman, Herbert Allen and Glenn Shields, Washington Township Commissioners. Appeal transferred September 14, 1970, to the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania from the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania.
Louis Vaira, for appellant.
James F. Toohey, with him Quinn, Plate, Gent, Buseck and Leemhuis, for appellee.
President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Manderino, Mencer and Rogers. Opinion by Judge Manderino.
Mike Yatzor was employed by Washington Township, a second class township in Erie County, to do general police work and was receiving a salary of one hundred dollars a month until January 7, 1966, when the Board of Supervisors of Washington Township advised him that his services would no longer be necessary. Yatzor appealed to the Erie County Court of Common Pleas, requesting reinstatement to his former position, back wages, and any other relief the Court might deem proper. The Erie County Court denied Yatzor any relief because it found that he was not a full-time policeman and thus not entitled to certain legal protections afforded to persons employed as regular full-time officers. The Court also noted in its opinion of May 15, 1970, that since Yatzor's dismissal, no other person has been hired as a replacement by the Township. This appeal is from the order of the Court of Common Pleas which was entered on May 15, 1970, dismissing Yatzor's appeal and denying any relief.
On August 7, 1970, Yatzor appealed the decision of the Court of Common Pleas of Erie County to the Supreme Court. When the appeal was filed, the Township Supervisors filed a motion to quash the appeal for the reason that it was not timely. The motion to quash and Yatzor's appeal were then transferred by the Supreme Court to the Commonwealth Court for disposition pursuant to the Commonwealth Court Act (Act No. 185 of January 6, 1970, P.L. ).
We find that the motion to quash filed by the Township Supervisors must be granted since Yatzor's appeal was filed eighty-three days after the final order of the Common Pleas Court entered on May 15, 1970.
Yatzor's alleged rights are governed by the provisions of the Police Tenure Act (Act of June 15, 1951, P.L. 586, § 1 et seq., 53 P.S. 811 et seq.), which applies
to second-class townships having a police force of less than three members. Section Five (53 P.S. 815) of this Act gives a suspended or dismissed employee the right to appeal to the court of common pleas of the county in which he was dismissed. However, the Act is silent as to any right of appeal to an appellate court from the decision of the court of common pleas. The established procedure for appellate review in situations such as these was by way of Supreme Court Rule 68 1/2. Toth v. Kostello, 425 Pa. 278, 228 A.2d 404 (1967). Rule 68 1/2 provides as follows:
"Where the subject matter does not fall within the statutory jurisdiction of the Superior Court, an appeal to the Supreme Court in the nature of a certiorari from a judgment, order or decision will lie only if specially allowed by the Court or by a Judge thereof, where . . . the relevant statute is silent on the question of appellate review.
In all such cases, the appellant shall file within 30 days from the date of the decision or order or judgment or decree sought to be reviewed a petition . . . setting forth the questions involved. . . ." (Emphasis added). It is clear that Yatzor's appeal to the Supreme Court was filed well in excess of the thirty-day limitation provided for in Rule 68 1/2. The decision of ...