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EUGENE MAHOFSKI v. CITY PITTSBURGH (01/13/76)

decided: January 13, 1976.

EUGENE MAHOFSKI, APPELLANT
v.
CITY OF PITTSBURGH, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in case of Eugene Mahofski v. City of Pittsburgh, No. 1312 July Term, 1973.

COUNSEL

Bryan Campbell, with him Peter J. Mansmann, and Mansmann, Beggy & Campbell, for appellant.

D. R. Pellegrini, Assistant City Solicitor, with him Mead J. Mulvihill, Jr., City Solicitor, for appellee.

Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer and Mencer, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 22 Pa. Commw. Page 630]

Eugene Mahofski (Appellant) appeals an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County*fn1 which dismissed his complaint and granted defendant's motion for summary judgment.

Appellant was employed by the City of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh) as a police officer. In 1967, the Public Safety Director wrote a letter to Pittsburgh's police officers who were enrolled in police science courses commending them for their dedication. In the letter, he referred to scholarship funds which were going to be made available by local industry and to a bill in the General Assembly which would provide automatic promotions to the rank of senior police officer for all who would be awarded the degree of Associate of Arts in Police Science. Moreover, the annual budget proposal for the Bureau of Police included provisions for the ranks of senior police officer and detective second-grade, a classification especially created for officers who received the police science degree.

After Appellant earned the degree, he applied for classification as detective second-grade. Funds were available for the promotional pay raise but Appellant failed to take the procedural steps required by the Policemen's

[ 22 Pa. Commw. Page 631]

Civil Service Act (Act), Act of August 10, 1951, P.L. 1189, as amended, 53 P.S. ยง 23531 et seq.

When his application was rejected, Appellant brought an action in assumpsit against Pittsburgh seeking money damages equal to the difference between the pay of a detective second-grade and his present pay as a fourth-year police officer. Preliminary objections in the nature of a demurrer were dismissed by the court below. At the close of the pleadings, Pittsburgh filed a motion for summary judgment which was granted. We affirm.

Appellant contends that Pittsburgh offered a promotion to the rank of detective second-grade to all police officers who earned a police science degree. He argues that in reliance thereon he completed his degree requirements. Pittsburgh argues that there is neither statutory authority for the Public Safety Director's "offer" nor does the Policemen's Civil Service Act permit promotions upon the successful completion of the Police Science course.

The issue before us is whether a police officer, who is awarded a Police Science degree, is entitled to a promotion to detective second-grade because of a purported offer of promotion by the Public Safety Director and the allocation of necessary funds where promotion ...


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