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RONALD J. MATSCHENER v. CITY PITTSBURGH (06/13/78)

decided: June 13, 1978.

RONALD J. MATSCHENER, APPELLANT
v.
CITY OF PITTSBURGH, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION; COUNTY OF ALLEGHENY; SCHOOL DISTRICT OF THE CITY OF PITTSBURGH, APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in case of Ronald J. Matschener v. City of Pittsburgh, a Municipal Corporation; County of Allegheny; and School District of the City of Pittsburgh, No. GD-76-17462.

COUNSEL

Stephen J. Zivic, with him Morton B. Debroff, for appellant.

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

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

Author: Rogers

[ 36 Pa. Commw. Page 70]

Ronald J. Matschener has appealed from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County dismissing his complaint in equity on the demurrers of the City of Pittsburgh (City), the County of Allegheny (County) and the School District of the City of Pittsburgh (School District). Matschener sought an order of the court below requiring the defendants specifically to perform an agreement entered into by the City, as trustee, to sell certain real estate to the plaintiff.

[ 36 Pa. Commw. Page 71]

By his complaint Matschener alleged that the City, County and School District were owners of property at 4506, 4508, 4510 and 4512 Haline Street, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; that the City became trustee of said properties on June 1, 1970 and managed and controlled the same for all three taxing bodies as beneficial owners; that Matschener and his family have been tenants of 4506 Haline Street since November, 1970; that on February 24, 1976, the City gave to Matschener a written first option to purchase the property at 4506 Haline Street for a subsequently established price of $5000.00; that on April 23, 1976, Matschener, through his attorney, notified the City in writing of his acceptance of the option to purchase and complied with terms of sale established by the City by forwarding a $500.00 cashier's check as deposit; that Matschener made substantial and valuable improvements to the premises in reliance upon the contract so made; and that the City refused to execute and deliver to Matschener the deed of the premises in question.

Each, the City, County and School District filed identical preliminary objections in the nature of a demurrer as follows:

Plaintiff has no claim against the [City, County or School District] to enforce an alleged contract for the sale of land not in accordance with the provisions of the Act of July 5, 1947, P.L. 1258 [ as amended ], 53 P.S. ยง 26101 et seq.

The court below sustained the demurrer stating that:

The plaintiff failed to aver that the alleged contract is in compliance with the manner mandated by the Act [of July 5, 1947] while Defendants admit that the alleged contract does not meet any of the requirements of ...


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