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Former employees sue Allegheny County controller alleging age, political discrimination

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Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012, 1:00 p.m.
 

Two former Allegheny County employees claim in a federal lawsuit filed Tuesday that Controller Chelsa Wagner fired them and at least six other people older than 50 and replaced them with younger workers who supported her political campaign.

Stanley M. Kaczmorski, 64, of Ross and Carmen Cupelli, 67, of Wilkins claim Wagner's lawyer notified them in December she would furlough them when she took office Jan. 2. She allowed Kaczmorski to remain until Feb. 17 so he would be vested for his pension, the lawsuit says.

Wagner's lawyer said they were being fired for budgetary reasons but their replacements make more money, the lawsuit says. They are suing Wagner and the county for age discrimination and violating their civil right to freedom of political affiliation.

County solicitor Andrew Szefi couldn't be reached for comment. Brad Korinski, solicitor for Wagner's office, said he hasn't seen the lawsuit, but based on its description, “the allegations are frivolous and without merit.”

Of the 86 employees in the controller's office, 44 are older than 50 and were employed before Wagner took office, Korinski said.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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