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JOHN W. ROSSELLI v. READING HOUSING AUTHORITY (05/13/88)

decided: May 13, 1988.

JOHN W. ROSSELLI, SR., PETITIONER
v.
READING HOUSING AUTHORITY, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the State Civil Service Commission in the case of John W. Rosselli, Sr. v. Reading Housing Authority, Appeal No. 6946, dated May 20, 1987.

COUNSEL

Barbara H. Guenther, for petitioner.

Raymond C. Schlegel, with him, Nedric L. Nissly, Roland & Schlegel, P.C., for respondent.

Judges Craig and Colins, and Senior Judge Kalish, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Colins.

Author: Colins

[ 116 Pa. Commw. Page 178]

John W. Rosselli, Sr. (petitioner) petitions for review of an order of the State Civil Service Commission (Commission) which upheld the decision of the Reading Housing Authority (respondent) to dismiss petitioner from his position as a Section 8 Housing Inspector.*fn1 We affirm.

[ 116 Pa. Commw. Page 179]

Petitioner was responsible for determining if housing units met the quality standards of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for inclusion in the Section 8 program. While employed by the respondent, petitioner was also a licensed real estate agent, affiliated with the Bione Agency (Agency), a real estate office in the Reading area which listed Section 8 properties. Respondent entered into a contract with HUD whereby he would administer the Section 8 program in the Reading area. The contract entered into between the respondent and HUD contained the following provision applicable to potential conflicts of interest:

15. Conflict of Interest Provision.

No present or former member or officer of the PHA (except tenant commissioners), no employee of the PHA who formulates policy or influences decisions with respect to the Section 8 program, and no public official or member of a governing body or State or local legislator who exercises functions or responsibilities with respect to the Section 8 program shall have any direct or indirect interest, during this person's tenure or for one year thereafter, in this Contract or in any proceeds or benefits arising from the Contract. This provision may be waived by HUD for good cause.

Beginning in the fall of 1984, petitioner was informed three times that his association with the Agency might be a conflict of interest. In June of 1986, as a result of reading in a newspaper a record of a real estate transaction in which petitioner had purchased a house from HUD, respondent's executive director, Mr. William Willis, informed petitioner that his personal real estate dealings might be in conflict with the HUD agreement. Mr. Willis also requested that petitioner obtain a waiver from HUD in accordance with the

[ 116 Pa. Commw. Page 180]

    above-quoted provision. Petitioner responded to Mr. Willis by stating that he would not be involved in any sales in which a conflict of interest might arise and that if any such conflict existed, he would contact the director to remedy the situation. Mr. Willis then informed petitioner that his response was inadequate and again ...


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