Appeal from the Order of the Pennsylvania State Architects Licensure Board, in case of State Architects Licensure Board v. Dana W. Gangewere, No. 81-AR-2042.
Mark G. Yoder, with him, Ralph J. Althouse, Jr., Bingaman, Hess, Coblentz & Bell, for petitioner.
Alexandra J. Matthews, Counsel, State Architects Licensure Board, with her, Joyce McKeever, Chief Counsel, Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs, and David F. Phifer, Chief Counsel, Department of State, for respondent.
Judges Barry and Palladino, and Senior Judge Kalish, sitting as panel of three. Opinion by Judge Palladino.
[ 98 Pa. Commw. Page 614]
This is an appeal by Dana W. Gangewere (Petitioner) from an order of the Pennsylvania State Architects Licensure Board (Board) which suspended Petitioner's license to practice architecture for nine months, six months of which were stayed in favor of probation. We affirm.
Petitioner has been licensed by the Board to practice architecture since 1956. On August 12, 1981, Petitioner was convicted in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (federal court) on three felony counts of willfully and knowingly filing income tax returns which substantially underreported his income, in violation of Section 7206 of the Internal Revenue Code, 26 U.S.C. § 7206(1). Petitioner was subsequently
[ 98 Pa. Commw. Page 615]
sentenced to pay a fine of $15,000 and to serve two months imprisonment.
On July 8, 1983, the Board issued a Citation and Rule to Show Cause (Citation) which notified Petitioner that a formal hearing was to be held on October 6, 1983, to determine whether his license to practice architecture should be either suspended or revoked as a result of the felony convictions in the federal court. The Citation specifically charged Petitioner with violations of Section 11 and Section 11(b) of the Architects Law,*fn1 Section 9.151(7) of the Board's regulations,*fn2 and Section 9124(c)(1) of the Crimes Code.*fn3 After a hearing on these charges the Board, on August 8, 1985, issued an adjudication in which it concluded that Petitioner had violated Section 11(b) of the Architects Law and Section 9124(c)(1) of the Crimes Code. The Board also determined that Petitioner had not violated Section 11 of the Architects Law or Section 9.151(7) of the Board's regulations. The Board ordered that Petitioner's license be suspended for nine months, the first three months to be an active suspension, and the latter six months to be probationary.
[ 98 Pa. Commw. Page 616]
Petitioner appeals from the Board's order asserting: (1) that the Board erred in suspending his license pursuant to Section 11(b) of the Architect's Law because that Law had been repealed before the Citation was issued; (2) Section 9124(c)(1) of the Crimes Code does not authorize the Board to suspend his license; (3) that the Board was estopped from suspending his license because it had renewed his license after he had been convicted
[ 98 Pa. Commw. Page 617]
and before the Citation was issued; (4) that the penalty of nine months suspension, six months of which is probationary, is overly harsh and an abuse of discretion; and (5) the Board's delay in issuing both the Citation and its adjudication prevents the Board from suspending Petitioner's license under the doctrine of laches and because ...