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08/21/97 CHICAGO TRANSIT AUTHORITY v. LYNN DOHERTY

August 21, 1997

CHICAGO TRANSIT AUTHORITY, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
LYNN DOHERTY, DIRECTOR, ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY BOARD OF REVIEW, AND ITS MEMBERS INDIVIDUALLY, ROLAND W. LEWIS, JOHN G. CASHMAN, STANLEY V. MUCHA, GARY J. SULLIVAN, JON R. WALKER, AND WILLIAM GRIFFIN, JR., DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES, AND CHICAGO TRANSIT AUTHORITY, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT, V. LYNN DOHERTY, DIRECTOR, ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY BOARD OF REVIEW, AND ITS MEMBERS INDIVIDUALLY, ROLAND W. LEWIS, JOHN G. CASHMAN, STANLEY V. MUCHA, GARY J. SULLIVAN, JOHN R. WALKER, AND BRYANT ASKEW, DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES.



APPEAL FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF COOK COUNTY. HONORABLE LESTER A. BONAGURO, JUDGE PRESIDING.

As Corrected September 16, 1997. Rehearing Denied September 22, 1997. Released for Publication October 9, 1997.

Presiding Justice Wolfson delivered the opinion of the court. McNAMARA and Cerda, JJ., concur.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Wolfson

PRESIDING JUSTICE WOLFSON delivered the opinion of the court:

In 1993 the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) conducted a "summer student program." The CTA hired full-time college students to work on a temporary basis during the summer months. The purpose was to cover temporary vacancies that occur during the summer because of vacations and sick leave taken by full-time permanent bus operators. In that way, college students obtain summer employment and the CTA keeps the buses running.

The question in this case is whether two college students, once the program ended, were entitled to receive unemployment compensation benefits. We hold, under the circumstances of this case, they were not.

FACTS

The plaintiff in this case is the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA). The defendants are Lynn Doherty, Director of the Illinois Department of Employment Security Board of Review; individual Board of Review members Ronald Lewis, John G. Cashman, Stanley Mucha, Gary Sullivan, and Jon Walker; and individual claimants William Griffin, Jr. (Griffin) and Bryant Askew (Askew).

In order to be considered for the "summer student program," applicants had to be full-time college students who either were registered for classes or were intending to register for classes in the fall semester. The program ran until September 30. All student participants were informed of the program requirements and the length of the program.

Askew

Askew participated in the 1993 summer student program. When Askew was first interviewed and hired by the CTA, he was a full-time student at Illinois State University in Normal, Illinois.

Before he started working, Askew signed an agreement which said:

"I understand that I am being hired by the Chicago Transit Authority as a temporary employee to work in place of permanent employees who are vacationing or are otherwise absent from duty.

I further realize that this temporary employment will continue only as long as the Authority's needs require, but will not extend beyond September 30, 1993.

I also attest to the fact that I am presently a full-time student enrolled in an approved institution, that I am eligible to return to school, and that I will be registering for the next academic term immediately following this employment. I do not desire any employment with the Chicago Transit Authority beyond September 30, 1993.

I am willing to accept employment with the Chicago Transit Authority under these conditions." (Emphasis added.)

Askew resigned from the CTA effective October 1, 1993. The record does not tell us whether he sought further employment with the CTA. Askew did not return to Illinois State in the fall of 1993 because the university had cancelled his major. Once Askew left the CTA, he looked for other work. The record shows that ...


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