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GEORGE WISSMAN v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (02/23/83)

decided: February 23, 1983.

GEORGE WISSMAN, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR. JEFFREY WISSMAN, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR. TIMOTHY J. DONNELLY, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR. ARTHUR WITZEL, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR. RAYMOND MARI, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR. KENNETH M. DANFIELD, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR. GEORGE HACKERT, PETITIONER V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT. BENSALEM TOWNSHIP, INTERVENOR



Appeals from the Orders of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in the cases of In Re: Claim of George Wissman, No. B-200829; Claim of Jeffrey Wissman, No. B-200828; Claim of Timothy J. Donnelly, No. B-200826; Claim of Arthur Witzel, No. B-200832; Claim of Raymond Mari, No. B-200830; Claim of Kenneth M. Danfield, No. B-200827, and Claim of George Hackert, No. B-200831.

COUNSEL

John Philip Diefenderfer, Struckert, Yates & Krewson, for petitioners.

Henry F. Huhn, with him Leslie G. Dias, for intervenor.

No appearance for respondent.

Judges Rogers, Craig and MacPhail, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Rogers.

Author: Rogers

[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 299]

The seven appellants in these unemployment compensation cases which we have consolidated were discharged from their employment with the Bensalem Township Public Works Department for the use of narcotics and dangerous drugs during working hours.

The appellants were declared eligible for unemployment compensation benefits by the Office of Employment Security. The employer appealed these decisions, and separate hearings were held by a referee. At each of these hearings, the employer's principal witness was an undercover agent who, for approximately three months, posed as a laborer in the Public Works Department and who testified concerning each claimant's use or purchase of marijuana, methamphetamine

[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 300]

    and/or quaaludes during working hours. The referee wrote a decision in each case and granted benefits to each claimant except one, Timothy Donnelly.

The employer appealed each of the decisions except that of Donnelly to the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board). Donnelly appealed the referee's decision in his case. The Board made specific Findings and Conclusions as to claimants Timothy Donnelly and Kenneth Danfield, deciding that each was unemployed due to his own willful misconduct and therefore ineligible for benefits pursuant to Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law, 43 P.S. ยง 802(e). Of course, the Board affirmed the referee's decision in Donnelly and reversed in Danfield.

In the other five cases, those of George Hackert, George Wissman, Jeffrey Wissman, Arthur Witzel and Raymond Mari, the Board reversed the referee, rendering five identical decisions reading in full as follows:

DECISION

AND NOW, November 6, 1981, it appearing that the issues of law and the facts involved in the above case are substantially the same as those involved in the claim of Kenneth M. Danfield, Decision No. B-200827, and it further appearing that said decision of the Board of Review is ...


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