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COUNTY LANCASTER v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (03/17/83)

decided: March 17, 1983.

COUNTY OF LANCASTER, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WELFARE, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the Department of Public Welfare in case of Appeal of: Conestoga View, File No. 23-80-20.

COUNSEL

Robert M. Frankhouser, Jr., Hartman, Underhill & Brubaker, for petitioner.

Bruce G. Baron, Assistant Counsel, for respondent.

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

Author: Craig

[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 640]

In this appeal, Lancaster County challenges the determination by the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) of the amount of money which the county was entitled to receive from the Commonwealth through the Medical Assistance Program.

The county operates the county nursing home facility, Conestoga View, with participation in the Medical Assistance Program,*fn1 through which the Commonwealth shares the financial support of the county home operation. At the end of each fiscal year, the Pennsylvania

[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 641]

Auditor General's office audits the county home for DPW, and in each year from 1975 through 1977 the auditors determined that the home had earned investment income. Under the applicable regulation,*fn2 DPW reduced the payment to the county in those years by an amount attributed to such income.

The county appealed those reductions, and after a hearing, the hearing examiner concluded that the county had failed to show that the home did not have investment income and recommended that DPW dismiss the appeal. The examiner also concluded that the appeal for fiscal year 1975 had not been timely filed. DPW's Office of Hearings and Appeals adopted the recommendation, although not totally, and entered an order dismissing the appeals.

Here the issues are:

1. Was the county's appeal timely with respect to ...


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