Appealed From No. G.D. 97-1903. Common Pleas Court of the County of Allegheny. Judge FRIEDMAN.
Before: Honorable Bernard L. McGINLEY, Judge, Honorable Dan Pellegrini, Judge, Honorable Jess S. Jiuliante, Senior Judge. Opinion BY Judge McGINLEY.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Mcginley
OPINION BY JUDGE McGINLEY
Stanley and Anna Lysicki (the Lysickis), Howard and Doris Geyser (the Geysers), and Robert J. and Eileen M. Gesk (the Gesks) (collectively, Appellants) appeal from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County (common pleas court) that sustained the preliminary objections of the Montour School District (School District).
Appellants are the owners of three tracts of property located on Klamath Drive in Robinson Township, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. The Lysickis have resided at Klamath Drive since 1950, the Geysers since 1960, and the Gesks since 1972. Appellants' property adjoins 41.42 acres of undeveloped property owned by the School District. The School District condemned this property in 1960 for public use. On September 19, 1996, the School District entered into a contract with Maronda Homes (Maronda) to sell the 41.42 acre tract of land for a purchase price of $300,000. On January, 2, 1997, the common pleas court granted the School District's petition to sell the property.
On February 7, 1997, Appellants filed a complaint in ejectment alleging:
8. The backyards of the plaintiffs [Appellants] directly abut and adjoin a portion of said . . . Property.
9. For a period of 21 years, the plaintiffs, each and all of them, have adversely possessed a portion of said . . . Property, consisting of an area of approximately 80,000 square feet, immediately abutting the rear of their property lines.
10. The plaintiffs' possession has been actual, continual, exclusive, notorious, distinct, and hostile for a period of 21 years and has consisted of actively farming said parcel of 80,000 square feet, more or less, each year, maintaining said land for farm use, and cutting grass on that portion of land not actually farmed.
14. The defendant School District has no right to sell the approximately 80,000 square foot portion of the . . . Property in that the defendant does not have title to said property.
Complaint in Ejectment, February 7, 1997, Paragraphs 8-10 and 14 at 3; Reproduced Record (R.R.) at 6a.
The School District preliminarily objected in the nature of a demurrer and asserted that Appellants' "complaint fails to state a claim against Montour School District as school districts are the agents of the Commonwealth and are, therefore, immune from suits for adverse possession." *f ...