Summaries of Caselaw 2012
Methodological Provisions: Caselaw
Berwick Area Landlord Association v. Borough of Berwick, 48 A.3d 524, (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): per Colins, J., held that an Ordinance enacted by the Borough of Berwick was not preempted by either the Landlord Tenant Act or the criminal code. See Article I, Section 1 infra.
Commonwealth v. Au, 42 A.3d 1002 (Pa. 2012): per Saylor, J., held that, under the Fourth Amendment, a request by a police officer for identification does not make the encounter an unconstitutional investigatory detention. Justice Saylor stated that litigants seeking to make a departure from the deterrence-based rationale of Fourth Amendment law by invoking the independent search-and-seizure jurisprudence under Article I, Section 8 of the Pennsylvania Constitution "must bring this matter into sharp focus in their advocacy." (For this reason, any issues that could have been raised under Article I, Section 8 were not reached by the court.) Justice Baer dissented, and was joined by Justice Todd: but agreed in a footnote that the scope of the decision is limited to a Fourth Amendment analysis (under which issues were raised) because it is up to the advocate to raise the privacy based-interests of Article I, Section 8
Article I: Declaration of Rights
Section I. Due Process
MCT Transportation, Inc. v. Philadelphia Parking Authority, 60 A.3d 899 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2013): per Leavitt, J., the court held that Section 5707(b) of the Parking Authority Law was an unconstitutional delegation of legislative power because the General Assembly failed to establish standard for the Parking Authority with regard to setting spending limits and fees in violation of the separation of powers. The court also held that the statute violated due process under the Fourteenth Amendment and Article I, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution because there is no opportunity for taxicab companies to challenge the fee that they must pay to stay in business, which has the effect of condemning property without a hearing.
Johnson v. Allegheny Intermediate Unit, 59 A.3d 10 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2012): per Pellegrini, J., the court held that the lifetime ban of school employment for those convicted of felony homicide in 24 P.S.C. § 1111(e) as amended in 2011 was not a violation of the ex post facto clause. The court also held, that because Mr. Johnson had been hired when the ban was only a five year ban, and his felony homicide fell outside of the five year window, that his substantive due process rights under Article I, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution were violated when the lifetime ban was applied to him. Mr. Johnson had an exemplary service record in performing his duties with the Allegheny Intermediate Unit. There was no rational reason given for why applying the lifetime ban to him served a legitimate governmental purpose.
Collura v. City of Philadelphia, 2012 WL 6645532, (E.D. Pa. December 21, 2012)(Civil Action No. 2:12-cv-4398.): following District Court precedent, the court, per DuBois, J., dismisses supplemental jurisdictional claims for damages under Art. I, sections 1, 7 and 8 of the Pennsylvania Constitution.
Robinson Twp. v. Commonwealth, 52 A.3d 463 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): per Pellegrini, J., in a challenge to the constitutionality of Act 13, which repealed the Oil and Gas Act and replaced it with a codified statutory framework for regulating oil and gas operations, the Court held that 58 Pa.C.S. § 3304, which allows oil and gas operations in all zoning districts, violates substantive due process under Article I, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution and under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution because it does not protect the interests of neighboring property owners from harm, alters the character of neighborhoods, and makes irrational classifications. The Court also held unanimously that, because 58 Pa.C.S. § 3215(b)(4) does not give guidance on when subsections are waivable by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), there was an unconstitutional delegation to the DEP of policy judgments that are reserved to the General Assembly. The court declared 58 Pa.C.S. § 3304 to be null and void, and enjoins all other parts of the law that would enforce 58 Pa.C.S. § 3304. The court also declared 58 Pa.C.S. § 3215(b)(4) to be null and void. (Brobson, J., filed a dissenting opinion on the holding that there is a violation of substantive due process under Article I, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution and under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.)
G.V. v. Department of Public Welfare, 52 A.3d 434 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): per Covey, J., applied the three part test of Matthews v. Eldridge, 424 U.S. 319 (1976) to appellant's interest in reputation under due process in Article I, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution. The court finds that, although substantial evidence is the appropriate standard for a finding that child abuse has occurred, clear and convincing evidence is required in order to maintain a name on the ChildLine & Abuse Registry because of the risk of erroneous deprivation of an interest in reputation. (Simpson, J., & Leadbetter, J., dissented.)
Berwick Area Landlord Association v. Borough of Berwick, 48 A.3d 524, (Pa.Cmwlth. June 27, 2012)(No. 766 C.D.2011): per Colins, J., upheld an Ordinance providing for duties and penalties for Owners and Occupants of rental properties for code violations. The ordinance seeks to address the decline in maintenance and safety in rental homes in the Borough to which end the Ordinance increases the powers of the Borough and landlords to control the conduct of tenants. The Berwick Area Landlord Association challenged the Ordinance on the basis that it was preempted by state law, that it violated substantive due process under Article I, Section 1, and that enactment of the Ordinance was not within the Borough's authority under the Borough Code. On the issue of preemption, the court found that the Ordinance was not preempted by the Landlord Tenant Act because it refers to and relies on the Landlord Tenant Act for eviction proceedings. The trial court had struck two provisions that might have been preempted by the Criminal Code, so a preemption analysis here was not necessary. On the issue of substantive due process, the Ordinance was enacted with the purpose of protecting and promoting "the public health, safety and welfare of its citizens" and falls within the police powers of the Borough of Berwick, so it is appropriately reviewed under a rational basis standard. The court found that there is "a real and substantial relation to the intended purpose of promoting the general welfare." There was no violation of substantive due process just because the Ordinance might change how some landlords do business. Finally, the court found that the Ordinance was within the authority of the Borough to enact under the Borough Code.
Balletta v. Spadoni, 47 A.3d 183 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2012): per Simpson, J., holding that Article I, Section 1 of the Pennsylvania Constitution does not give rise to a cause of action for monetary damages for an injury to reputation separate and apart from the claim for defamation provided for in Section 8343 of the Judicial Code and case law. Reputation is a fundamental right protected by state constitutional standards of due process and equal protection, but there is no case law establishing a cause of action for monetary damages for "constitutional defamation." Previous case law finding that Article I, Section 1 was self-executing involved only injunctive relief. The Commonwealth Court declined to apply the Restatement (Second) of Torts § 874A (Tort Liability for Violation of Legislative Provision), since the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has not yet addressed its application to the State Constitution. McCullough, J., dissenting, states that the court should not have reached the constitutional issue as the case can be decided on narrower grounds.
Caputo v. W.C.A.B., 34 A.3d 908 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): a unanimous court, per Leavitt, J., held that the offset against disability for 50% of an individual's Social Security retirement benefit is reasonably related to the legitimate governmental objectives of reducing workers' compensation costs for Pennsylvania employers and encouraging Social Security beneficiaries to participate in the workforce and does not violate Pennsylvania Equal Protection.
Section 2. Political Powers
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Office of Attorney General v. Packer Township and Packer Township Board of Supervisors, 49 A.3d 495, (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): per Friedman, J., denied the motion for summary judgment made by Packer Township in response to the petition for review filed by the Attorney General of Pennsylvania. The Township had passed an Ordinance restricting the use of sewage sludge on farmland by corporations. The Ordinance was explicitly prohibited by Chapter 3 of the Agricultural Code. The Township invoked Article I, Sections 2 and 25 arguing that Section 2 "establishes an ‘inalienable right of local self-government,'" and that Section 25 "means that ‘this right is not subject to the general government's procedures for altering government or for providing for local government.'" The court rejects this argument on the basis that the Pennsylvania Constitution recognizes and protects the rights of individual citizens, not local governments. Municipal corporations are creatures of the state and only have the powers granted to them by the Legislature, which has supreme power over municipalities
Section 5. Elections
Applewhite v. Commonwealth, Slip Copy, 2012 WL 4497211 (Pa.Cmwlth. October 2, 2012)(No. 330 M.D. 2012): per Simpson, J., enjoined the portion of the Act 18, which requires voters without ID to cast provisional ballots. The effect of the injunction is that, while voters may still be asked for ID, all voters without ID will be allowed to vote by regular ballot. Judge Simpson narrowly tailored the preliminary injunction to address the concerns raised by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which were the failure to comport with the liberal access requirement of the act and voter disenfranchisement.
Applewhite v. Commonwealth, 54 A.3d 1 (Pa. 2012): Per Curiam opinion, vacated the decision by the Commonwealth Court, which had denied a preliminary injunction on the Voter ID Law, and returned the matter to the that court for further fact finding on the new expedited procedures for getting out alternative identification cards for the current election cycle. The court agreed with the Petitioners "that if a statute violates constitutional norms in the short term, a facial challenge may be sustainable even though the statute might validly be enforced at some time in the future." The Court held that if the lower court finds in its predictive judgment that there will be "no voter disenfranchisement", then that court will be "obliged to enter a preliminary injunction." Justice Todd and Justice McCaffery each dissented from sending the case back for more fact finding rather than for immediate issuance of the preliminary injunction.
Applewhite v. Commonwealth, 2012 WL 3332376 (Pa.Cmwlth. July 25, 2012)(No. 330 M.D.2012): per Simpson, J., denying the request for a preliminary injunction on the enforcement of Act 18, the Voter ID Law, by the state pending the resolution of the challenge to the law by Petitioners. The trial court rejected the facial challenge under Article I, Section 5 and Article VII, Sections 1 and 14. The court held that the Petitioners failed to show that in an as applied challenge they would not be able to vote or that there was not some other sufficient remedy short of an injunction. Vacated by: Applewhite v. Commonwealth, 54 A.3d 1 (Pa. 2012)
Section 6: Trial By Jury
Commonwealth v. Real Property and Improvements at 2338 N. Beechwood Street Philadelphia, PA 19132, --- A.3d ---, 2013 WL 1360084 (Pa.Cmwlth. April 5, 2013)(No. 631 C.D. 2012): per Cohn Jubelirer, J., the court held that Rule 1007.1 of the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure concerning waiver of a jury trial does not apply where due process concerns are implicated by a quasi-criminal proceeding under the Controlled Substances Forfeiture Act when claimant's personal residence could be forfeited. Claimant had not been convicted in any criminal proceeding with regard to drug arrests made at the property, and was not informed of her right to a jury trial under Article I, Section 6 in an in rem proceeding pursuant to the Forfeiture Act. The trial court had held that she waived that right under the Rules of Civil Procedure. The court vacated and remanded based on subsequent precedent that was made by the court concerning the quasi-criminal nature of forfeiture proceedings. Judge Simpson concurred in the result only. Judge Pellegrini wrote a concurring opinion in which he listed other rights that a person facing forfieture of property has before the hearing.
Commonwealth v. Hunsberger, 58 A.3d 32 (Pa. 2012): per McCaffery, J., the court held that where the defendant has consulted with counsel about proceedings, wherein the defendant is not present at the sidebar questioning of venirepersons, there is an adequate basis on which to conclude that the right of the defendant to be present for the jury selection process has not been compromised.
Section 8: Search and Seizure
Commonwealth v. Henderson, 47 A.3d 797 (Pa. 2012): per Saylor, J., the Court held that the independent police team requirement for application of Pennsylvania's version of the independent source doctrine should be limited to situations where it would prevent the police "from exploiting their own willful misconduct." Absent such malfeasance, the test of Murray v. United States, 487 U.S. 533 (1988) will strike the best balance between privacy under Article I, Section 8 of the Pennsylvania Constitution and the needs of law enforcement. The independent source doctrine is an exception to the exclusionary rule where evidence seized by police under circumstances that would otherwise violate a constitutional right will be admissible "if the prosecution can demonstrate that the evidence in question was procured from an independent origin[.]" Commonwealth v. Melendez, 676 A.2d 226, 332 (Pa. 1996). Chief Justice Castile wrote a concurring opinion in Henderson praising the majority opinion for reigning in "the broad state constitutional dictum" of Melendez, which had limited the independent source doctrine to situations where the second investigative is "truly independent" of the first investigative team. Justice Todd wrote a concurring opinion in which she concurred in the result, but criticized the majority's reasoning for restricting privacy protection from unlawful intrusion in a way not contemplated by the framers of Article 1, Section 8.
Section 9: Confrontation, Self-Incrimination and Due Process
Commonwealth v. Hunsberger, 58 A.3d 32 (Pa. 2012): See Article I, Section 6, above.
Section 10: Double Jeopardy and Just Compensation
Miller v. Pocono Ranch Lands Property Owners, 2012 WL 6803269 (M.D. Pa. December 20, 2012)( Civil Action No. 3:11-0317.): report and recommendation per Mannion, Magistrate Judge, that takings claim is not ripe where plaintiff has failed to allege that she sought, and has been denied, compensation under the Eminent Domain Code.
Section 17: Ex Post Facto Laws
Johnson v. Allegheny Intermediate Unit, 59 A.3d 10 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2012): see Article I, Setion 1 above.
Berkhimer v. State Employees' Retirement Board, 60 A. 3d 873 (Pa.Cmwlth 2013): per McCullough, J., the court rejected claims made by petitioner, a former judge who had been subject to disciplinary action for using improper language with staff that included sexual connotations, that the forfeiture of his pension was an unconstitutional impairment of his retirement contract under Article I. Section 17 of the Pennsylvania Constitution, and that the forfeiture was a violation of Article V, Section 16(a) prohibiting diminution of judicial salaries during a judge's term in office. There was no impairment of a contract because, when a public official begins each new term in office, he or she renews the pension contract to include the new term in public service. The renewal of the contract after the 1993 amendments relating to forfeiture put all earnings at risk. Additionally, there was no ex post facto violation of Article I, Section 17 due to the forfeiture. Finally, there was no impermissible diminution of judicial salary, because the forfeiture of a pension takes place after the term in office.
Commonwealth v. Allshouse, 36 A.3d 163 (Pa. 2012): per Todd, J., the Court noted that the ex post facto clauses of the United States and Pennsylvania Constitutions are "virtually identical in language" and comparable in standards applied to determine violations; Saylor, J., joined by Castille, C.J., concurred.
Section 26: No Discrimanation by Commonwealth and Its Political Subdivisions
Pocono Mountain Charter School v. Pocono Mountain School District, --- F.Supp.2d ---, 2012 WL 5463132 (M.D. Pa. November 8, 2012)(Civil Action No. 3:CV 101171): per Caputo, J., allowed the claim for equal protection under Article I, Section 26 to proceed, but denied the claim of interference with the right to worship under Article I, Section 3 because the charter school sought to assert the constitutional rights of individuals who were not plaintiffs in this litigation. In allowing the equal protection claim to proceed, the court said that the analysis is the same as that for claims made under the Fourteenth Amendment and that under the Pennsylvania Constitution, the right to public education and religious freedom are fundamental rights.
Section 27: Environmental Protection
Board of Supervisors of Springfield Tp. v. Pennsylvania Public Utility Comm., 41 A.3d 142 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): per Pellegrini, J., the court affirmed the order of the Commission permitting construction of a high-voltage electric transmission line, rejecting the Township's argument under Art. I, section 27 as improperly formulated; Leavitt, J., dissented on the Section 27 issue.
Article II. The Legislature
Section 1: Delegation
Robinson Twp. v. Commonwealth, 52 A.3d 463 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): See Article I, Section 1 above for discussion of unconstitutional delegation of policy judgement.
Section 2: Legislative Vacancies
Fagan v. Smith, 41 A.3d 816 (Pa. 2012): the Court, Per Curiam, granted original jurisdiction under King's Bench Power and issued a mandamus ordering the Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives to issue writs of election for special elections to fill vacancies in six Legislative Districts despite apparent statutory discretion to delay such special elections during the redistricting process; Saylor, J., joined by Eakin, J., and Orie Melvin, J., dissented; Eakin, J., joined by Orie Melvin, J., dissented.
Section 7: Ineligibilty of Criminal Convictions
Bracey v. Helfrich, Slip Copy (Ct. of Comm. Pleas, York Co. August 1, 2012)(No. 2011-SU-5077-47): per Linebaugh, J., the Court found that a in-state conviction for possession of LSD with the intent to distribute, graded as a felony in Pennsylvania, was not an infamous crime for the purposes of Article II, Section 7. The Court applied the more probing analysis of Commonwealth ex rel. Kearney v. Rambler, 32 A.3d 658 (Pa. 2011) to a conviction for an in-state felony, because the Court found that a drug crime was not of the same sort of offense that was in the contemplation of the framers of the State Constitution or the State Supreme Court in Comm. v. Shaver, Bright.E.C. 134, 3 Watts & Serg. 338, 342 (Pa. 1842).
Section 16: Requirement of Legislative Districts
Holt v. 2011 Legislative Reapportionment Commission, 38 A.3d 711 (Pa. 2012): in an opinion accompanying an order issued 1/25/2012 (see Art. II, Section 17(e) below), the Court, per Castille, C.J., held that the 2011 Final Reapportionment is contrary to law because it contains "numerous political subdivision splits that are not absolutely necessary" and that the Commission could have achieved greater fidelity to the Art. II, Section 16 mandates of compactness, continguity, and integrity of political subdivisions; Saylor, J., filed a concurring and dissenting opinion; Eakin, J., filed a concurring and dissenting opinion; Orie Melvin, J., filed a concurring and dissenting opinion.
Section 17(e): Legislative Reapportionment Commission
Holt v. 2011 Legislative Reapportionment Commission, 38 A.3d 711 (Pa. 2012): by per curiam order, the Court held that the final 2011 Legislative Reapportionment Plan is contrary to law and shall be remanded to the Commission; Saylor, J., joined by Eakin and Orie Melvin, JJ., dissented. An opinion is to follow.
Article III. Legislation
Section 3: Single Subject Rule
Sernovitz v. Dershaw, 57 A.3d 1254 (Pa.Super. 2012): per Donahue, J., the Court struck four provisions from Act 47 of 1988, three of which related to a ban on wrongful birth lawsuits and one of which related to substitute bail commissioners in Philadelphia. The wrongful birth provisions were challenged as unconstitutional in violation of Article III, Sections 1, 3, 4 and 6 of the Pennsylvania Constitution. The court only reached the Article III, Section 3 challenge and found that the provisions struck were not germane to the single over-arching subject of the bill, which was "post-trial matters in criminal cases," or helped to carry out that purpose. A concurring statement by Ford Elliot, P.J.E., notes that "wrongful life" has never been recognized as a cause of action in Pennsylvania, regardless of the statute.
Barrel of Monkeys, LLC v. Allegheny County, 39 A.3d 559 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2012): the court, per Simpson, J., held that the Allegheny County drink tax Ordinance is valid against challenges that the underlying state statutory authorization violated the single subject rule of Art. III, section 3, the tax violated the uniformity clause of Art. VIII, section 1, and the Ordinance passed through a vote manifesting a conflict of interest.
Section 31: Prohibited Delegation
International Ass'n of Fire Fighters, Local 22, AFL-CIO v. Pennsylvania Labor Relations Bd., 35 A.3d 833 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): the court, per McCullough, J., held that Fire Service Paramedics are not firefighters for purposes of Act 111; in dissent, Pellegrini, J., would hold that the question of who is a firefighter is a constitutional issue under Art. III, section 31, the Board lacks jurisdiction.
Lancaster County v. Pa. Labor Relations Bd., 35 A.3d 83 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): the court, per Pellegrini J., held that county's transfer of funds did not require a legislative act so as to render arbitration award "advisory" as improper delegation under Art. III, Section 31.
Article IV. The Executive
Section 4.1: Attorney General
Robinson Twp., Washington Co. v. Commonwealth, 2012 WL 1429454 (Not selected for publication in the Atlantic Reporter) (Pa.Cmwlth. May 21, 2012)(No. 284 M.D.2012): per Quigley, J., the Court denied two petitions to intervene with regard to an action challenging the constitutionality of Act 13 under the Pennsylvania constitution. With regard to the petition by two Pennsylvania legislators, the Court held that they did not have they have no legally enforceable interest as required by Rule 2327(4) because legislative intent will be addressed by the court as necessary as a result of the Statutory Construction Act of 1972 and traditional methods of statutory construction, even if the Attorney General chooses not to defend the Act based on statutory intent. With regard to the petition from members of the oil and gas industry, although they have a legally enforceable interest in the form of land ownership and leaseholds, these interest have no bearing on the Constitutionality of the Act and this interest is adequately represented by the Attorney General, whose duty it is to defend the act.
Section 9. Pardoning Power, Board of Pardons
Commonwealth v. Michael, 56 A.3d 899 (Pa. 2012): in a Per Curiam decision, the Court held that the Court of Common Pleas and the Commonwealth Court were without authority under Section 9545(c) of the Post Conviction Relief Act to enter a stay of execution in order to allow Applicant more time for evaluation for medical experts and interviews with corrections officials in order to ensure a more complete hearing before the Board of Parsons. There is no Constitutional right to clemency, so procedural due process is very limited. Absent arbitrary and capricious conduct in the way the clemency process is being administered, intervention by the Court would be a violation of the separation of powers doctrine.
Article V. The Judiciary
Section 1: Seperation of Powers
Pennsylvania State Association of County Commissioners v. Commonwealth, 52 A.3d 1213 (Pa 2012): per Castille, C.J., held that increased inter-branch cooperation since the Interim Report and indication of further cooperative efforts on the part of the General Assembly "for further evolution toward a better, administratively unified judicial system" warranted the Courts taking no further action to require any further specific legislative action. The Court denied the motion for mandamus relief to enforce the Court's order of July 26, 1996 to compel funding of the unified judicial system by the General Assembly and to implement the Report of the Master. The Court relinquished jurisdiction over this issue.
Section 10(c): Rule-making Authority
City of Pittsburgh v. Silver, 50 A.3d 296 (Cmwlth.Ct. 2012): per Pellegrini, J., held that the Office of Open Records (OOR) does not have jurisdiction under the Right-to-Know Law (RTKL) to compel disclosure of documents relating to City of Pittsburgh settlement negotiations because such negotiations are efforts to settle litigation, and litigation falls under the sole jurisdiction of the Supreme Court over the practice of law under Article V, Section 10(c). Any provision of the RTKL that purports to compel disclosure of information related to the representation of a client, which is regulated by the Supreme Court, is an unconstitutional infringement on the Court's exercise of authority under the State Constitution. Covey, J., filed a concurring and dissenting opinion in which he agrees that the materials were not subject to disclosure, but bases this on the long-standing public policy against disclosing documents relating to settlement agreements rather than holding that the OOR lacks jurisdiction. Simpson, J. and Brobson, J. dissented but did not file opinions.
Section 18: Judicial Discipline
In re Merlo, 58 A. 3d 1 (Pa. 2012): per Todd, J., the Court affirmed the findings and sentence given by the Court of Judicial Discipline in a case where the judge: was habitually tardy or called off late; abusive to counsel and litigants; did not follow proper procedure for landlord tenant cases; and mishandled truancy cases. This brought the judicial office into disrepute under Article V, Section 18(d)(1). The fact that the removal from office and a lifetime ban from holding judicial office in the state was a harsher sentence than those given to judges with similar violations did not make the sentence illegal since each case has different mitigating and aggravating circumstance to be considered. Removal from office is an appropriate sentence under Article V, Section 18(d)(1) for bringing the office into disrepute.
In re Melvin, 57 A.3d 226 (Pa.Ct.Jud.Disc. 2012): per Curran, J., suspended Justice Joan Orie Melvin without pay and held that the rights set out in Article V, Section 18(b)(5) for final orders of sanctions are not available for interim proceedings provided for in Article V, Section 18(d)(2). This constitutional scheme does not offend "any overweening notion of due process" derived from the United States Constitution or the Pennsylvania Constitution. The State Constitution specifically bestows upon the Court of Judicial Discipline the authority to suspend a judge without pay for an interim period. The drafters provided for interim proceedings to take place between the filing of charges against a judicial officer and the final determination of sanctions in order to safeguard the integrity of the judicial system. McGinley, J., dissented and would have left the May 22, 2012 order in place suspending Justice Orie Melvin with pay.
Article VIII. Taxation and Finance
Section 1: Uniformity
Marshall v. Commonwealth, 41 A.3d 67 (Pa.Cmwlth. 2012): the court, per Brobson, J., held that eleven times greater tax liability to non-resident partner denied offset from out-of-state losses available to Pennsylvania resident partners does not violate uniformity clause.
Section 2(a)(v): Institutions of Public Charity Exempt from Taxation
Mesivtah Eitz Chaim of Bobov, Inc., v. Pike County Board of Assessment Appeals, 44 A.3d 3 (Pa. 2012): the Court, per Eakin, J., held that the satisfaction of statutory charity criteria pursuant to the Institutions of Purely Public Charity Act, (Act 55), does not displace the need for an entity seeking nontaxable status as an institution of purely public charity to also satisfy the judicially construed constitutional criteria under Section 2(a)(v); entity in question did not qualify under the Constitution as an institution of purely public charity. Saylor, J., joined by Castille, C.J., and Orie Melvin, J., dissented.