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Dibble v. Quinn

United States District Court, S.D. Illinois

May 19, 2014

JOHN T. DIBBLE, Plaintiff,
v.
PATRICK J. QUINN, Governor of Illinois, MITCH WEISZ, Chairman of the Illinois Worker's Compensation Commission, MARIO BASURTO, KEVIN LAMBORN, YOLAINE DAUPHIN, NANCY LINDSAY, JAMES DEMUNNO, MOLLY MASON, DAN DONOHOO, THOMAS TYRELL, and DAVID GORE, Commissioners of the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission, Defendants.

MEMORANDUM & ORDER

DAVID R. HERNDON, Chief District Judge.

I. Introduction

This matter is before the Court on defendants Patrick J. Quinn et al.'s motion to dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the FEDERAL RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE (Doc. 19). For the reasons stated below, defendants' motion is GRANTED.

According to the complaint, plaintiff John T. Dibble (Dibble) was appointed to the position of arbitrator for the Illinois Worker's Compensation Commission (Commission) in September 1990 and re-appointed to six-year terms in 1996, 2002, and 2008 to a term that was to continue through September 2014.

The Illinois Worker's Compensation Act (Act), 820 ILCS 305/1 et seq., establishes the power to appoint arbitrators. Dibble's claims arise from H.B. 1698 which was signed into law on June 28, 2011, Public Act 97-0018 (P.A. 97-18), amending 820 ILCS 305/14.

Prior to P.A. 97-18, 820 ILCS 305/14 provided:

Each arbitrator appointed after the effective date of this amendatory Act of 1989 shall be appointed for a term of 6 years. Each arbitrator shall be appointed for a subsequent term unless the Chairman makes a recommendation to the Commission, no later than 60 days prior to the expiration of the term, not to reappoint the arbitrator.
Notice of such a recommendation shall also be given to the arbitrator no later than 60 days prior to the expiration of the term. Upon such recommendation by the Chairman, the arbitrator shall be appointed for a subsequent term unless 8 of 10 members of the Commission, including the Chairman, vote not to reappoint the arbitrator.
All arbitrators shall be subject to the provisions of the Personnel Code, and the performance of all arbitrators shall be reviewed by the Chairman on an annual basis. The Chairman shall allow input from the Commissioners in all such reviews.

In pertinent part, P.A. 97-18 amended 820 ILCS 305/14 to provide that:

Notwithstanding any other provision of this Section, the term of all arbitrators serving on the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly, including any arbitrators on administrative leave, shall terminate at the close of business on July 1, 2011, but the incumbents shall continue to exercise all of their duties until they are reappointed or their successors are appointed.
...
Each arbitrator appointed on or after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 97th General Assembly and who has not previously served as an arbitrator for the Commission shall be required to be authorized to practice law in this State by the Supreme Court, and to maintain this authorization throughout his or her term of employment.

P.A. 97-18, a copy of which is attached to Dibble's complaint, explicitly stated that these changes "shall prevail over any ...


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