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Koshliek v. Board of Chosen Freeholders of Passaic County

Decided: October 1, 1976.

JOSEPH KOSHLIEK, PLAINTIFF,
v.
BOARD OF CHOSEN FREEHOLDERS OF PASSAIC COUNTY AND RICHARD DE MARCO, TREASURER OF PASSAIC COUNTY, DEFENDANTS



Doan, J.s.c.

Doan

This case is before the court on plaintiff's motion for summary judgment under R. 4:46-2. There being no genuine issue as to any material fact, the matter is ripe for such disposition. Judson v. Peoples Bank of Westfield , 17 N.J. 67 (1954).

This is an action for breach of contract. Plaintiff Joseph Koshliek is presently employed as a Passaic County sheriff's officer and is assigned to the court house. He has held the position since July 9, 1970 and had previously been on active duty with the United States military from August 1948 to July 1970. As a sheriff's officer plaintiff's salary and other employee benefits are governed by a labor agreement entered into by the County of Passaic through the board of chosen freeholders and Local No. 197 of the New Jersey State Patrolman's Benevolent Association on March 23, 1976, for the period of January 1, 1975 through December 31, 1976. Plaintiff has been and is a member of that association. Up

to March 26, 1976 plaintiff had received his base salary plus longevity pay of 10% of his base salary due to the completion of 25 years of service. Twenty-two years of prior service in the U.S. Air Force was counted in computing years of service for longevity pay purposes under Article X of the labor agreement. This longevity pay was discontinued pursuant to resolution of the board of chosen freeholders effective March 26, 1976.

Plaintiff contends that Article X of the labor agreement entitles him to longevity pay equal to 10% of his pay, computed by adding 22 years of service in the military and six years of service with the county. That article reads as follows:

Article X Longevity

Longevity, as heretofore, shall be granted and in addition an employee shall be entitled to two (2) percent longevity stipend at the completion of seven years as a Court Attendant or Sheriff's Officer attached to the Court House.

Earned longevity, as heretofore, shall be granted and in addition, entitled employees shall receive longevity pay as follows:

2% of base pay after completion of 7 years of service.

4% of base pay after completion of 10 years of service.

6% of base pay after completion of 15 years of service.

8% of base pay after completion of 20 years ...


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