Rice Township Settles Two Lawsuits

Marcia Thomas, former Rice Township Secretary Treasurer and now chairman of the board of supervisors, settled two lawsuits filed against a number of Rice Township elected and appointed officials for $200,000 on April 2, 2014. Thomas had filed Whistleblower and Defamation actions in March 2011 against Rice Township Board of Supervisors George Venesky and Miller Stella, Jr, Secretary-Treasurer Donald Armstrong, Zoning Officer Louis Konopelski, Auditors Toni Rogan, Rhonda Rowles and Elaine Wallace and Thomas Marsilio, Esquire in their respective individual and official capacities. She filed a second action against George Venesky in 2013.

Rice Township was represented by attorneys hired by their insurance company the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Risk Management Association (PIRMA), integrated Risk Management (IRM), American Risk Pooling Consultants In (ARPCO), and York Risk Pooling Services (YORK). The settlement will be paid by PIRMA.

The settlement collectively releases the defendants of and from all manner of liability, actions and causes of action, attorney fees, suits, debts claims and demands whatsoever.

Thomas filed her first suit against Rice Township in March 2011, two months after she was not reappointed to her position as the Rice Township Secretary-Treasurer, a position she had held for 20 years. Thomas’ annual salary in 2010 the year before she was terminated was approximately $32,500. She filed a second suit against George Venesky in 2013. The settlement does not resolve claims against William Higgs, Esquire, James Brando, Esquire and Kevin Rogan docketed in the 2011 suit.

The complaints against those released by the settlement will be marked as Settled, Discontinued and Ended. The payment made is in compromise to terminate further controversy respecting all claims for damages from Thomas. The sum received is the sole consideration for this release.

Thomas also agreed to satisfy any and all present or potential claims and/or liens or subrogation held by third parties including Medicare and Medicaid, medical services, medical insurance benefits, workers compensation insurance benefits, disability insurance benefits, state and or federal health or income benefits, ERISA liens, claims of Bankruptcy Court and any claims, cross claims, costs and/or expenses incurred by Releasees in connection with the

See Lawsuits page 4