Original Jurisdiction, Appeal in case of George Feigley v. Glen Jeffes, Commissioner of Corrections and Thomas A. Fulcomer, Superintendent of State Correctional Institution-Huntingdon.
George Feigley, petitioner, for himself.
Calvin R. Koons, Deputy Attorney General, with him, Andrew S. Gordon, Chief Deputy Attorney General, Chief, Litigation Section, and LeRoy S. Zimmerman, Attorney General, for respondents.
Judges Craig and Palladino, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Barbieri.
[ 97 Pa. Commw. Page 584]
Petitioner, George Feigley, has commenced a civil action in the nature of mandamus addressed to our original
[ 97 Pa. Commw. Page 585]
jurisdiction under Section 761 of the Judicial Code, 42 Pa. C.S. § 761, against the Respondents, Glen Jeffes, the Commissioner of Corrections for the Commonwealth, and Thomas A. Fulcomer, the Superintendent of the State Correctional Institution at Huntingdon (SCI-Huntingdon). Petitioner is presently an inmate at SCI-Huntingdon.
By this action, Petitioner seeks this Court to order Respondents to screen all food handlers at SCI-Huntingdon for the presence of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) antibodies; comply with the requirements of Section 1 of the Act of June 14, 1923, P.L. 775, 61 P.S. § 101, as it relates to providing adequate exercise periods for inmates housed in the restrictive housing unit (RHU); to certify Sandra Good as Petitioner's religious advisor pursuant to Section 1 of the Act of June 11, 1879, P.L. 140, 61 P.S. § 121, and permit Petitioner religious visits with Ms. Good; and allow Petitioner to audit the employment qualifications of the staff at SCI-Huntingdon to ensure that all staff members are minimally qualified for the positions which they hold. Respondents have filed preliminary objections to the complaint wherein they objected to the mode of service; demurred to the mandamus action; and asserted the defense of a prior pending action in another forum. Petitioner has also filed a motion for summary relief pursuant to Pa. R.A.P. 1532(b). It is Respondents' Preliminary Objections and Petitioner's Motion for Summary Relief which are before this Court at the present time. We shall first address the Preliminary Objections of Respondents.
Respondents' first objection to Petitioner's action is the sufficiency of service. Respondents argue that Pa. R.C.P. No. 2104(b) prescribes the method for service of process in actions addressed to this Court's original jurisdiction.*fn1
[ 97 Pa. Commw. Page 586]
That rule requires personal service of the writ or complaint upon the defendants and upon the attorney general. Since Petitioner here served his complaint upon the Respondents alone, and by first class mail, Respondents contend that Petitioner's service is deficient and this Court does not have jurisdiction over them.
Service of process in actions addressed to this Court's original jurisdiction is governed by the Rules of Appellate Procedure, not the Rules of Civil Procedure. Philadelphia County Intermediate Unit No. 26 v. Department of Education, 60 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 546, 432 A.2d 1121 (1981). The form of service of process is, therefore, governed by Pa. R.A.P. 1514(c), not by Pa. R.C.P. No. 2104(b). Id. at 551, 432 A.2d at ...