ShareThis Page
News

Hempfield files suit seeking to recover pension overpayments

Paul Peirce
| Saturday, May 5, 2012, 3:37 a.m.

Hempfield Township supervisors are asking a Westmoreland County Common Pleas Court judge to force two former employees to repay more than $23,600 in pension overpayments.

A township lawsuit seeks to force former Supervisor Donald C. DeNezza, who was an employee between July 13, 1975, and Jan. 2, 1994, to repay $15,210 it claims he was overpaid after he left office.

The lawsuit alleges DeNezza's monthly pension benefit was supposed to be reduced from $1,313 to $469 after he turned 62 on March 13, 2003.

However, the lawsuit alleges DeNezza continued to receive the higher pension payout until the error was discovered in October 2004.

In a separate lawsuit, the township alleges its former zoning officer, Nicholas Rullo, also owes the township $8,400 in pension overpayments.

According to the lawsuit, Rullo was employed from July 5, 1989, until July 31, 1996. The benefit plan that Rullo chose required his monthly benefit to be reduced from $640 a month to $80 a month when he turned 62 after June 9, 2003.

However, the lawsuit alleges that Rullo continued to receive the overpayments until the error was discovered in October 2004.

DeNezza and Rullo declined comment on the lawsuit when contacted yesterday.

Last fall, former township treasurer and authority manager Gerald Answine repaid the township $2,865 in pension overpayments to avoid further litigation.

In addition to the overpayments, the township is seeking interest plus cost of the litigation.

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.

click me