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ACME FABRICATORS AND WELDERS v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (01/22/85)

COMMONWEALTH COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA


decided: January 22, 1985.

ACME FABRICATORS AND WELDERS, INC., AND GREULICH, INC., PETITIONERS
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, RESPONDENT

Appeal from the Order of the Board of Claims in the case of Acme Fabricators & Welders, Inc. and Greulich, Inc. v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation, No. 690.

COUNSEL

James C. Larrimer, Dougherty, Larrimer & Lee, for petitioners.

Michael J. McCaney, Jr., Assistant Counsel, with him, Spencer A. Manthorpe, Chief Counsel, and Jay C. Waldman, General Counsel, for respondent.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr. and Judges Rogers, Williams, Jr., MacPhail, Doyle, Barry and Colins. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 87 Pa. Commw. Page 163]

Acme Fabricators and Welders, Inc. (Acme) and Greulich, Inc. (Greulich) appeal the Board of Claims' order dismissing their contract claim against the Department of Transportation (DOT). We affirm.

DOT awarded Acme a highway improvement contract which included the replacement of an existing wooden bridge with an open steel decking bridge. The contract, incorporating Section 523 of the Administrative Code of 1929 (Code),*fn1 prohibited the use of any materials manufactured in West Virginia (a state which boycotts out-of-state materials). Part of the steel used in the decking supplied to Acme by Greulich was rolled in West Virginia. DOT rejected the decking because it contained materials manufactured in West Virginia. Acme and Greulich brought suit to recover the cost of manufacturing a substituted decking. Although the Board dismissed their claim on the merits, it found DOT's statute of limitation defense to be "substantial."

[ 87 Pa. Commw. Page 164]

DOT again contends that this action is barred by the six-month statute of limitations.*fn2 We agree.

The statute of limitations begins to run when the amount due under the claim is known and the party is able to advise the Commonwealth department involved of the claim and file a concise and specific written statement with the Board. Department of Community Affairs v. Craftech International, Ltd., 72 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 162, 456 A.2d 247 (1983).*fn3

A review of the record discloses that, by November 5, 1979, both Acme and Greulich knew the amount due under their claim because the project was then accepted as complete by DOT. As that time, Acme and Greulich were able to prepare the required claim statement. Therefore, the statute of limitations began to run on November 5, 1979, and expired on May 5, 1980. The complaint was not filed with the Board until May 20, 1980.

We hold that this action is barred by the statute of limitations.*fn4

Affirmed.

Order

The order of the Board of Claims, Docket No. 690 dated November 1, 1983, is affirmed.

Disposition

Affirmed.


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