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CLARENCE E. SPICER v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (11/09/79)

decided: November 9, 1979.

CLARENCE E. SPICER, JR., PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Clarence E. Spicer, Jr., No. B-155-5591.

COUNSEL

George R. Price, with him Walter Perry, for petitioner.

Elsa D. Newman, Assistant Attorney General, with her Gerald Gornish, Attorney General for respondent.

Judges Mencer, Blatt and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Mencer.

Author: Mencer

[ 47 Pa. Commw. Page 273]

Clarence E. Spicer, Jr. (claimant) appeals an order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review

[ 47 Pa. Commw. Page 274]

(Board) denying him benefits, because of willful misconduct, pursuant to Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law (Act), Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L. (1937) 2897, as amended, 43 P.S. ยง 802(e). Because of inadequate findings of fact, we must remand the case to the Board for further proceedings.

Claimant was employed as a baker's helper for Stroehmann Brothers Company (Stroehmann) for approximately fourteen months prior to his discharge. During his tenure with Stroehmann, claimant had been warned and twice suspended because of tardiness, absenteeism, and early leavings without authorization, all of which were infractions of Stroehmann's rules.*fn1 These rules, which were a product of a labor-management agreement, provided a tiered classification of violations. Serious infractions, such as claimant's, were classified as group I violations. If an employee accumulated a total of five group I violations in a specified period, he was automatically terminated. On December 19, 1977, the date of discharge, claimant had four group I violations.

The Board found that claimant was terminated for arriving one hour and forty-three minutes after his scheduled starting time of 6 a.m. This was his fifth group I violation. Claimant attributed his lateness to a series of transportation problems beyond his control. Claimant testified that, since he did not own an

[ 47 Pa. Commw. Page 275]

    automobile, he relied on fellow employees for rides to work. If, for some reason, these rides were unavailable, claimant would call a taxi.

On December 19, 1977, claimant's ride failed to show up at the normal pickup time of 4:50 a.m. Claimant testified that he waited until 5 a.m. and then called Stroehmann's to see whether his ride had already arrived. Discovering that it had, claimant informed Stroehmann that he would call a taxi. When the taxi also failed to appear, claimant again called Stroehmann, explained his predicament, and asked for ...


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