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LUCILLE DEFRANK v. COUNTY GREENE (03/11/80)

decided: March 11, 1980.

LUCILLE DEFRANK, APPELLANT
v.
COUNTY OF GREENE, RICHARD S. COWAN, JR., ERNEST C. LEMLEY, JOSEPH C. PAWLOSKY AND THOMAS H. BOYD, JR., APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Greene County in case of Lucille DeFrank v. County of Greene, Richard S. Cowan, Jr., Ernest C. Lemley, Joseph C. Pawlosky and Thomas H. Boyd, Jr., No. 698 of 1978, in Equity.

COUNSEL

John A. Stets, of McCall, Krill & Murphy, for appellant.

A. J. Marion, for appellees.

Judges Crumlish, Jr., Blatt and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Craig. President Judge Bowman did not participate in the decision in this case. Judge DiSalle did not participate in the decision in this case.

Author: Craig

[ 50 Pa. Commw. Page 31]

Lucille DeFrank (appellant) appeals from the decision and order of the Court of Common Pleas of Greene County, which sustained a preliminary objection in the nature of a demurrer by appellee Greene County (county) and dismissed appellant's equity suit seeking reinstatement to her former position as

[ 50 Pa. Commw. Page 32]

    director of nursing at the county-operated Curry Memorial Home.

Appellant was dismissed from that position by the acting administrator of the facility, by his letter of June 30, 1978. Appellant sued for reinstatement alleging that her summary dismissal was arbitrary and a denial of due process because she was not provided with any statement of the grounds for her discharge, nor was she afforded a hearing before the county commissioners. She claims that her right to a hearing is guaranteed by a Personnel Policy Manual covering employees at the facility at the time of her discharge.

The manual, the existence of which is admitted by the county's pleading, provides under the heading, "WHEN THINGS GO WRONG OR YOU HAVE A PROBLEM," that:

If the time should come when you feel you have a complaint or a problem, follow this procedure: First, talk things over with your supervisor. If this fails to provide a satisfactory answer, talk it over with your department head. If this fails to provide a satisfactory answer, write it out briefly and submit it to the administrator. The administrator will gather all the facts, contact the people involved, then work out a solution.

If no solution is reached, you will have the right of a hearing before the ...


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