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UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD REVIEW COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA v. EDMUND G. PINGER (08/08/75)

decided: August 8, 1975.

UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
v.
EDMUND G. PINGER, APPELLANT



Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Edmund G. Pinger, No. B-122635.

COUNSEL

Anthony J. Lucadamo, for appellant.

Daniel R. Schuckers, Assistant Attorney General, with him Sydney Reuben, Assistant Attorney General, and Robert P. Kane, Attorney General, for appellee.

Judges Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Mencer.

Author: Mencer

[ 21 Pa. Commw. Page 62]

Edmund G. Pinger (appellant) appeals to this Court from an order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) which terminated his unemployment benefits because of his alleged discouraging reply to an offer of employment.

The Board denied further benefits by invoking Section 402(a) of the Unemployment Compensation Law, Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L. (1937) 2897, as amended, 43 P.S. ยง 802(a), which provides in pertinent part:

"An employe shall be ineligible for compensation for any week --

"(a) In which his unemployment is due to failure, without good cause, either to apply for suitable work at such time and in such manner as the department may prescribe, or to accept suitable work when offered to him by the employment office or by any employer. . . ." (Emphasis added.)

"Good cause" has been equated with "good faith," which requires affirmative conduct consistent with a

[ 21 Pa. Commw. Page 63]

    genuine desire to work and be self-supporting. Koscur Unemployment Compensation Case, 196 Pa. Superior Ct. 548, 176 A.2d 164 (1961). A claimant cannot refuse an offer of suitable employment and still be entitled to benefits, absent reasonable and substantial grounds for such refusal. Trella v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 10 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 305, 309 A.2d 742 (1973). Discouraging a job opportunity is equivalent to refusing a job opportunity. Bradley Unemployment Compensation Case, 198 Pa. Superior Ct. 356, 181 A.2d 894 (1962).

Our scope of review in unemployment compensation cases is limited to questions of law and, absent fraud, to a determination as to whether the Board's findings are supported by the evidence. Questions of credibility and the weight to be given evidence are for the Board. Shira v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 10 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 457, 310 A.2d 708 (1973).

The Board found:

"1. Claimant was last employed by HUD, Wilkes-Barre, Pa., and his last day of work was January 25, 1974.

"2. Claimant worked for this employer as an engineering inspector for 1 1/2 years and was paid at the rate of $9,500.

"3. Claimant was previously employed by Burg Electronics, New Cumberland, Pa., as an engineer for 6 months and was paid at the rate of $11,000.

"4. On May 6 claimant was interviewed in the Hazleton local office and was given a referral to possible employment as a plant engineer with Certain-Teed, Mountaintop, Pa., at a salary of $13,000 to $15,000 a year.

"5. Claimant was requested to mail a form ES-508X, Notice of Referral from the Pennsylvania State Employment Service and a resume to Certain-Teed.

[ 21 Pa. Commw. Page 64]

"6. Claimant mailed the form ES-508X and a resume to Certain-Teed.

"7. In addition, the claimant sent the following letter to Certain-Teed:

Phone: 717-636-0872

Edmund Pinger

535 Hemlock Street

Freeland, PA ...


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