Share This Page

Former employees sue Allegheny County controller alleging age, political discrimination

| 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.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.