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BARRY K. SNYDER v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (02/19/82)

decided: February 19, 1982.

BARRY K. SNYDER, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the State Civil Service Commission in case of Barry K. Snyder v. Department of Transportation, Appeal No. 2523.

COUNSEL

W. Robert Landis, with him Joseph F. Wusinich, III, Landis & Wusinich, for petitioner.

Mark Hodgeman, Assistant Attorney General, with him Regis J. McCoy and Louis G. Cocheres, Assistant Attorneys General, Ward T. Williams, Chief Counsel, and Edward Biester, Attorney General, for respondent.

Judges Williams, Jr., MacPhail and Palladino, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Williams, Jr. Judge Palladino did not participate in the decision in this case.

Author: Williams

[ 64 Pa. Commw. Page 600]

This is an appeal by Barry K. Snyder from an order of the State Civil Service Commission (Commission). The Commission dismissed an earlier appeal filed by appellant. In that appeal, appellant charged his employer with engaging in discriminatory practices when it failed to promote him to a vacancy in a higher job classification.

Appellant was employed as a Civil Engineer II(E) by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (Department). He was so employed from September, 1972 until June, 1978, when he was furloughed.

Prior to appellant's furlough, he applied for a promotion to the position of Civil Engineer III(E). That job had become vacant in March, 1978 when a Department employee resigned the position. Although his

[ 64 Pa. Commw. Page 601]

    name appeared on a list of those eligible to assume the available position, and he received a handsome recommendation from his supervisor, appellant's request for the promotion was denied. Appellant received formal notice of the denial by memorandum dated March 23, 1978.

In late June, 1978, the unoccupied position was filled by the voluntary demotion of a Civil Engineer IV. At that time, appellant received notice of his furlough.

As a result of his non-promotion, Snyder filed an appeal on June 29, 1980 with the Commission. He alleged therein that his promotion was denied for non-merit reasons. Such a denial, appellant asserted, constituted discriminatory behavior by the Department of Transportation, Appointing Authority, in violation of the Civil Service Act (Act).*fn1 Additionally, appellant contended that the Appointing Authority's actions were contrary to those sections of the Act requiring that a vacant position be filled via a promotion,*fn2 and that an appointment to such a position occur within thirty (30) days of the vacancy.*fn3 The Commission conducted a hearing in this matter and in November, 1979, entered an order dismissing appellant's appeal and upholding, as proper, the actions of the Appointing Authority. The instant appeal followed.

Appellant's appeal to this Court is based on allegations virtually identical to those he raised at the hearing before the Commission. We will begin by addressing ourselves to the issue of whether the Appointing Authority employed discriminatory practices in failing to ...


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