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DONALD J. KENNEDY v. ELECTRIC HEIGHTS HOUSING ASSOCIATION (08/19/81)

decided: August 19, 1981.

DONALD J. KENNEDY, APPELLANT
v.
ELECTRIC HEIGHTS HOUSING ASSOCIATION, A NONPROFIT CORPORATION, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in the case of Electric Heights Housing Association, a nonprofit corporation v. Donald J. Kennedy, No. GD 80-04595.

COUNSEL

Eugene A. Lincoln, for appellant.

J. Craig Kuhn, Kuhn, Engle & Stein, for appellee.

President Judge Crumlish and Judges Rogers and Blatt, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Blatt.

Author: Blatt

[ 61 Pa. Commw. Page 349]

The appellant, Donald J. Kennedy, seeks review of a decision of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County which upheld a determination made by the

[ 61 Pa. Commw. Page 350]

    appellee, Association,*fn1 terminating the appellant's membership in the Association.

The Association is a nonprofit housing cooperative, and the appellant entered into a contract with it in 1964 for the mutual ownership of a dwelling unit. In compliance with this agreement, the appellant paid a monthly mortgage fee and became a member of the Association, subject to the terms and conditions laid out in the Association bylaws, regulations and occupancy rules.

By an Association letter dated January 10, 1980, the appellant was advised that certain complaints had been brought by other members of the Association as to his conduct and that the Association's Board of Directors (Board) would consider those complaints at its next meeting. The Board then decided by a vote of four to three to terminate the appellant's contract with and membership in the Association as of January 18, 1980, and he was so informed. Under the Association bylaws, the appellant then had a right to a hearing before the Board, but he instead exercised his right to appeal the Board's decision to the entire membership of the Association. A special meeting was scheduled for February 13, 1980, and during a recess of that meeting, the Board met in caucus and reaffirmed its prior vote, this time by a margin of five to three. The membership meeting was then resumed at which time evidence was presented regarding the appellant's conduct, and he was allowed to produce his own evidence and to cross-examine the persons who had filed the complaint. The membership then voted 30 to 23 in favor of expelling the appellant from the Association.

An action in ejectment including a confession of judgment thereon was filed with the lower court and a

[ 61 Pa. Commw. Page 351]

    hearing was held to determine whether or not the judgment in the ejectment action should be stricken or opened. Pa. R.C.P. No. 2959. The court below upheld the ejectment and, after reconsideration and affirmance by ...


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