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In re Thompson

Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division

June 11, 2013

IN THE MATTER OF CARMELA THOMPSON, DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Argued May 30, 2013

On appeal from the New Jersey Civil Service Commission, CSC Docket No. 2011-4564.

Walter R. Bliss, Jr., argued the cause for appellant Carmela Thompson.

Pamela N. Ullman, Deputy Attorney General, argued the cause for respondent Civil Service Commission (Jeffrey S. Chiesa, Attorney General, attorney; Lewis A. Scheindlin, Assistant Attorney General, of counsel; Ms. Ullman, on the brief).

Before Judges Grall and Koblitz.

PER CURIAM

Petitioner, formerly employed in the classified service by the Division of Taxation, Department of Treasury, was suspended from her position pending disposition of criminal charges, which were ultimately dismissed in their entirety. N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.5(a)2. Claiming entitlement to more back pay and vacation and administrative leave than awarded pursuant to N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.10(c), she appeals a final administrative action of the Civil Service Commission affirming the denial of her requests for additional reimbursement.[1] Petitioner also argues that the Commission erred in denying her an evidentiary hearing on the ground that there was no dispute of material fact. See N.J.S.A. 11A:2-6(a)-(b) (requiring a hearing for specified appeals, not including appeals from determinations concerning back pay and benefits, and otherwise providing for review on a "written record").

Petitioner was suspended on August 11, 2006 and reinstated on September 2, 2008. On returning to work, she applied for back pay and lost vacation and administrative leave, and those requests were granted in part.

Petitioner was awarded back pay from August 11, 2006 through December 30, 2006, and from May 1, 2007 through August 31, 2008. The Commission denied back pay for the intervening period on the ground that she had not made "reasonable efforts to find suitable employment" during that time. N.J.A.C. 4A:2-2.10(d)4. In applying for back pay, petitioner advised her employer that she was unable to work from January 2007 to May 2007 because she was caring for her husband and mother.

Petitioner received her vacation time for 2007, which she was permitted to carry forward to use in 2008. But she was not permitted to carry vacation time earned in 2006 or administrative leave that she did not use in 2006 and 2007. The Commission denied her requests for these benefits as barred by N.J.S.A. 11A:6-2, governing the carrying of unused vacation time, and N.J.S.A. 11A:6-6, providing that no unused administrative leave, which is granted annually, may be carried forward for use in a subsequent year.

Having considered all of the arguments presented, we conclude that they lack sufficient merit to warrant discussion in a written opinion. R. 2:11-3(e)(1)(E). We have further concluded that the Commission's decision should be affirmed substantially for the reasons stated in its written determination issued on October 20, 2011. Affirmed.


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