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FALLS TOWNSHIP BOARD SUPERVISORS v. CHARLES BOZZO AND ROBERT F. JAMES (02/05/74)

decided: February 5, 1974.

FALLS TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS, APPELLANT,
v.
CHARLES BOZZO AND ROBERT F. JAMES, JR., APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Bucks County in case of In Re: Petition of Falls Township Board of Supervisors to Appoint a Firm of Certified Public Accountants, No. 72-10416-04-6.

COUNSEL

Samuel M. Snipes, for appellant.

No appearance for appellees.

President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and Blatt. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 11 Pa. Commw. Page 600]

On November 28, 1972, pursuant to a petition submitted by the Falls Township Board of Supervisors, the Court of Common Pleas of Bucks County entered an order appointing the firm of Mershon, Warburton & Company, Certified Public Accountants [Mershon], to audit the accounts of Falls Township and the township officers beginning January 1, 1973, for the year 1972, pursuant to Section 745 of The Second Class Township Code, Act of May 1, 1933, P.L. 103, as amended, 53 P.S. § 65101. The above-mentioned petition of the supervisors was presented to the Court of Common Pleas as a result of a petition presented them by a number of taxpayers, in excess of twenty-five, requesting the appointment of a firm of certified public accountants.

On December 29, 1972, upon the petition of two of the three elected auditors of the township, Charles Bozzo and Robert F. James, Jr., the court below entered a rule upon the township supervisors to show cause why the order of November 28, 1972, appointing the Mershon firm to audit the township accounts should not be vacated.

A hearing was subsequently held upon the aforementioned rule to show cause and on February 6, 1972, the Court of Common Pleas of Bucks County vacated the appointment of Mershon.*fn1

[ 11 Pa. Commw. Page 601]

New petitions were then filed by the Board of Township Supervisors for the appointment of another firm of certified public accountants, and a hearing was scheduled for March 12, 1973. The hearing was not held because of the issuance and receipt of certiorari from this Court as a result of the within appeal of the February 6th order of the court below.

Section 745 of The Second Class Township Code, amended by the Act of June 9, 1972, P.L. , No. 109, § 1, provides:

" To employ a certified public accountant registered in Pennsylvania, a firm of certified public accountants so registered or a competent public accountant or a competent firm of public accountants to be appointed by the court of common pleas at least thirty days prior to the close of the fiscal year to audit the accounts of the township and the township officers, if a petition has been presented to the supervisors by at least twenty-five of the township asking for such appointment. The amount paid to the accountant or firm in any year shall not exceed the maximum allowed by law to be paid to the township auditors, in such year, unless the payment of an additional amount is approved by the court. When an accountant or firm is appointed as herein provided, the township auditors shall not audit, settle or adjust the accounts audited by such appointee but shall perform the other duties of their office.

"When an accountant or firm is employed under the provisions of this clause, the accountant or firm shall have the powers given to the auditors under sections 545, 546 and 551 of this act, except the power to fix compensations authorized in section 515 and referred to in section 545 of this act. They shall perform the duties of the auditors as provided in section 547. ...


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