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CITY PITTSBURGH v. JOHN D. CONLEY (06/08/89)

decided: June 8, 1989.

CITY OF PITTSBURGH, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION, APPELLANT,
v.
JOHN D. CONLEY, T/D/B/A DUFFY'S VENDING, APPELLEE



Appeal from Common Pleas Court, Allegheny County, Honorable Silvestri Silvestri, Judge.

COUNSEL

Gretchen G. Donaldson, Associate Sol. and D.R. Pellegrini, City Sol., Pittsburgh, for appellant.

Wendell G. Freeland, Margaret M. Hock, and Freeland & Kronz, Pittsburgh, for appellee.

Crumlish, Jr., President Judge, and Colins, J. and Barbieri, Senior Judge.

Author: Colins

[ 126 Pa. Commw. Page 307]

The City of Pittsburgh (City) appeals an order of the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas (trial court) which preliminarily enjoined the City from revoking the mechanical/electronic amusement device license of John D. Conley, t/d/b/a Duffy's Vending (appellee) until final disposition of appellee's appeal of a criminal conviction of a violation of Section 5513(a) of the Crimes Code, 18 Pa. C.S. § 5513(a) (maintaining a gambling device). We reverse.

Appellee was licensed by the City pursuant to Chapter 777 of the City Code of Ordinances (City Code) to provide mechanical/electronic amusement devices to customers

[ 126 Pa. Commw. Page 308]

    within the City. Appellee is licensed for seventy-five (75) of these devices which are placed throughout various establishments in the Pittsburgh area. On March 16, 1988, appellee was found guilty of violating 18 Pa. C.S. § 5513(a) (maintaining a device to be used for gambling purposes, in this instance a poker machine). As a result, appellee received a sentence of two years probation and a fine of Two Thousand Five Hundred Dollars ($2,500.00). Appellee appealed this decision to the Superior Court of Pennsylvania, and the outcome is still pending.

On October 3, 1988, the City notified appellee that his licenses for mechanical/electronic amusement devices were being revoked pursuant to Section 777.07 of the City Code, which mandates that in the event an owner of a mechanical/electronic device is convicted of violations of any of the gambling laws of Pennsylvania, each City license issued to that person shall be revoked. This notice also informed appellee that his customers would be notified immediately of the license revocation and, accordingly, he was ordered to remove all of his machines from all locations within the City.

Section 701.15 of the City Code provides:

(a) Any person aggrieved by any action of the License Officer may request a hearing before the License Officer within ten days following the effective date of any action complained thereof. The appeal shall set out a copy of the order or decision appealed from and shall include a statement of the facts forming the basis of the appeal.

(b) A copy of such appeal shall be filed by the appellant with the License Officer at the time of the filing . . . and the hearing shall be held ...


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