The City of Union City is governed by a board of commissioners pursuant to the form of government authorized by the Walsh Act, N.J.S.A. 40:70-1 et seq. Plaintiffs, as residents and taxpayers of the city, brought this action in lieu of prerogative writs attacking the right of three of the commissioners to hold other paid positions in the municipality. A further charge relating to the validity of positions held by two other officials, Frank X. Clark and Lawrence P. Parachini, has already been determined by this court in an oral opinion. Consequently, this opinion will deal only with the issues involving defendants Harry M. Calandrillo, Jr., Paul J. Lombardo and James E. Lagomarsino.
Since the facts are not in dispute, counsel stipulated on the return date of the order to show cause that the court consider the matter in the procedural status of cross-motions for summary judgment.
Calandrillo, Lombardo, Lagomarsino, Clark and Meehan were elected as commissioners of Union City on May 12, 1970 and assumed their offices on May 19, 1970. At the
organization meeting, pursuant to the applicable statute, the commissioners were assigned to head the five separate departments as follows:
William J. Meehan -- Public Works
Harry M. Calandrillo, Jr. -- Public Safety
Paul J. Lombardo -- Revenue and Finance
James E. Lagomarsino -- Public Affairs
Frank X. Clark -- Parks and Public Property
Each of the commissioners receive a salary of $7500 a year and William J. Meehan receives an additional $500 as mayor.
On or about July 17, 1970 Lagomarsino, as Director of Public Affairs, appointed his fellow commissioner, Calandrillo, to a position designated as Advisor of Veterans' Affairs at an annual salary of $3900. Prior thereto, Calandrillo had been on leave of absence from his former position as a municipal police officer.
On January 7, 1971 there was a reshuffling of the departments among the commissioners, with the following result:
William J. Meehan -- Public Affairs
Harry M. Calandrillo, Jr. -- Public Works
Paul J. Lombardo -- Public Safety
James E. Lagomarsino -- Revenue ...