Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Blair County in case of In Re: Certiorari of Arbitration Award between Borough of Hollidaysburg and the Hollidaysburg Police Department Association, No. 1395 C.P. 1981.
T. Dean Lower, for appellant.
M. David Halpern, Jubelirer, Carothers, Krier, Halpern & Smith, for appellee.
Judges Blatt, Craig and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge MacPhail.
[ 70 Pa. Commw. Page 421]
The Borough of Hollidaysburg (Borough) has appealed from an order of the Court of Common Pleas
[ 70 Pa. Commw. Page 422]
of Blair County which denied the Borough's challenge to an arbitration award entered pursuant to the Act of June 24, 1968, P.L. 237, as amended, 43 P.S. §§ 217.1-217.10 (commonly referred to as Act III).
At issue here is an arbitration award rendered after the Borough and the Hollidaysburg Police Department Association (Association) reached an impasse on two issues during collective bargaining negotiations for the 1981 contract year. This appeal is limited to the arbitrator's*fn1 award regarding the Borough's responsibility to pay legal expenses and attorneys' fees incurred by police officers who are required to defend themselves against criminal charges brought against them as a result of or in the course of the performance of their duties as police officers. The arbitrator determined that such expenses should be paid by the Borough under certain circumstances.*fn2
[ 70 Pa. Commw. Page 423]
The court of common pleas subsequently denied the Borough's challenge to the award, concluding that the arbitrator did not exceed his powers in rendering the award and that the subject of legal expenses and attorneys' fees was within the permissible scope of an arbitration award under Act III.
Our scope of review in a case of this nature is restricted to questions of jurisdiction, the regularity of the proceedings, questions of excess in the arbitrator's exercise of powers and constitutional questions. De Carbo, DeSanzo, Brest and Leymarie v. Elwood City, 3 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 569, 284 A.2d 342 (1971). In the instant case the Borough contends that the ...