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DANIEL FARLEY ET AL. v. CITY MCKEESPORT (07/22/77)

decided: July 22, 1977.

DANIEL FARLEY ET AL.
v.
CITY OF MCKEESPORT, A THIRD CLASS MUNICIPALITY, AND MCKEESPORT MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES PENSION ASSOCIATION, APPELLANTS



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in case of Daniel Farley, Joseph Hanratty, Chester Grygo, Mentral Robinson, Oliver Doonan, Robert Swauger, Henry Woodworth, George Harper, August DiToppa, Frank Del Signore, Herbert Lundin, Frank Castor and Morris Gerendash and Milk and Ice Cream Salesmen, Drivers and Dairy Employees, Local Union No. 205, Affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of America, by William E. Lickert, President and Trustee ad litem, v. City of McKeesport, a third class municipality, and McKeesport Municipal Employees Pension Association, No. GD 75-21506.

COUNSEL

Walter F. Baczkowski, with him Liddle and Adams, for appellants.

Sandra Reiter Kushner, with her Herman L. Foreman, and Rothman, Gordon, Foreman and Groudine, for appellees.

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

Author: Crumlish

[ 31 Pa. Commw. Page 251]

The City of McKeesport and the McKeesport Municipal Employees Pension Association (Appellants) appeal an order of the court of common pleas granting declaratory judgment in favor of certain municipal employees and their union. This case involves the proper

[ 31 Pa. Commw. Page 252]

    interpretation of Ordinance No. 2583 of the City of McKeesport (Ordinance), which is identical to the service increment provision for third class municipalities contained in the Act of May 23, 1945, P.L. 903, as amended, 53 P.S. ยง 39371 et seq.*fn1 The Ordinance establishes and sets forth the mechanism by which a municipal employee may qualify for the "service increment," an addition to his retirement allowance, which increases for each year of service beyond 20 years. Appellants argue that the Ordinance does not credit employees for years worked prior to the adoption of the Ordinance.

A careful reading of the Ordinance compels the conclusion that service prior to the adoption of the Ordinance must be credited in calculating the employees' service increments.

The judgment of the court below is therefore affirmed.

The statutory scheme of the Ordinance, while it is not an example of masterful draftsmanship, is sufficiently clear. Section 4(c) of the Ordinance states:

Section 4. (c) In addition to the retirement allowance which is authorized to be paid from the pension fund . . . every contributor who shall become entitled to the retirement allowances should be entitled to the payment of 'service increments.'

Next, we must consider how a contributor becomes entitled to the service increment. The statute provides ...


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