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EUGENE C. BARNES v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (02/11/88)

decided: February 11, 1988.

EUGENE C. BARNES, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in the case of In Re: Claim of Eugene C. Barnes, No. B-231150-C.

COUNSEL

Margaret A. O'Connor, for petitioner.

James K. Bradley, Assistant Counsel, with him, Clifford F. Blaze, Deputy Chief Counsel, for respondent.

Judges Craig and Palladino, and Senior Judge Barbieri, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Barbieri.

Author: Barbieri

[ 113 Pa. Commw. Page 378]

Eugene C. Barnes (Claimant) appeals the decision of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) denying him benefits under Section 402(e) of the Unemployment Compensation Law, Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L. (1937) 2897, as amended, 43 P.S. ยง 802(e). We shall reverse.

Claimant was originally awarded benefits following a referee's decision on April 11, 1984, which the Board affirmed. The Board then granted reconsideration and reversed its prior order. Claimant appealed to this Court and in Barnes v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 100 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 89, 514 A.2d 271 (1986) we remanded to allow the Board to set forth in the record the basis upon which it granted reconsideration. On January 7, 1987, the Board issued its order which mirrored the findings and conclusions rendered in its prior reconsideration and again found Claimant ineligible for benefits. The basis stated for the reconsideration was that the Board "may have erred and disregarded competent and consistent employer testimony" in affirming the referee's decision. Claimant appeals, asserting that the Board failed to present good cause for the granting of reconsideration and the decision is not supported by substantial evidence.

[ 113 Pa. Commw. Page 379]

At the outset, we note that our remand in this case was based on our holding in Grcich v. Unemployment Page 379} Compensation Board of Review, 58 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 62, 427 A.2d 299 (1981). In remanding this case, referring to our statements and rulings in Grcich, where this Court relied upon Flanagan v. Unemployment Compensation Board of Review, 47 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 120, 407 A.2d 471 (1979), we stated:

Therefore, we hold that the Board must clearly set forth in the record the basis upon which it grants reconsideration of its decision, in order that we may properly exercise our appellate role to oversee abuses of discretion.

100 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. at 93, 514 A.2d at 273, quoting from Grcich, 58 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. at 68, 427 A.2d at 301.

Obviously, the question before us is whether or not the Board has expressed a good cause basis for granting the reconsideration. We first take note of the Board's initial decision in which it affirmed the ...


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