The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.

Administrative Appeal Supreme Court Opinion

by Booth, George


SC19831 - Maturo v. State Employees Retirement Commission (Administrative appeal; "The plaintiff, Joseph Maturo, Jr., appeals from the judgment of the trial court upholding the declaratory ruling of the defendant, the State Employees Retirement Commission, and dismissing his administrative appeal. The plaintiff retired in 1991 from his position as a firefighter with the town of East Haven and was awarded a disability pension through his membership in the municipal employees retirement system (retirement system). He subsequently was elected to the position of mayor of East Haven in 1997, and served in that capacity until 2007, when he lost his reelection bid. During that time, the commission and the retirement services division of the Office of the State Comptroller (collectively, the agencies), which jointly administer the retirement system, interpreted the Municipal Employees' Retirement Act (act), General Statutes ยง 7-425 et seq., to provide that a retired member, who is reemployed by a municipality that participates in the retirement system, may continue to receive a retirement pension if he or she is reemployed in a position, such as the mayor of East Haven, that the municipality has not designated for participation in the system (nonparticipating position). In 2009, however, the agencies concluded that they had misconstrued the act in this regard and that a retiree cannot continue to collect a pension while reemployed in any full-time position with a participating municipality. Accordingly, when the plaintiff was again elected mayor in 2011, the retirement services division suspended his pension, a decision that both the commission and the trial court, Schuman, J., subsequently affirmed. On appeal, the plaintiff's primary contention is that the agencies improperly construed the reemployment and disability pension provisions of the act, and that he is not barred from receiving a disability pension while serving as the mayor of East Haven. The plaintiff also challenges the trial court's conclusions that he did not rely to his detriment on the agencies' previous interpretation of the act and that the commission did not violate his rights to equal protection and due process of law. Finding no error, we affirm.")