149 F.3d 1151 (10th Cir. 1998), 97-6223, Smith v. City of Enid By and Through Enid City Com'n

Docket Nº:97-6223.
Citation:149 F.3d 1151
Party Name:Cecil M. SMITH, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. CITY OF ENID, by and through the ENID CITY COMMISSION, Defendant-Appellee, Enid Fire Department Civil Service Commission, Defendant, Oklahoma Firefighters Pension and Retirement System, Defendant-Intervenor-Appellee.
Case Date:July 15, 1998
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
 
FREE EXCERPT

Page 1151

149 F.3d 1151 (10th Cir. 1998)

Cecil M. SMITH, Plaintiff-Appellant,

v.

CITY OF ENID, by and through the ENID CITY COMMISSION,

Defendant-Appellee,

Enid Fire Department Civil Service Commission, Defendant,

Oklahoma Firefighters Pension and Retirement System,

Defendant-Intervenor-Appellee.

No. 97-6223.

United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit

July 15, 1998

Page 1152

Phyllis L. Walta (Frank E. Walta with her on the briefs), Walta & Walta, Enid, Oklahoma, for Plaintiff-Appellant Cecil M. Smith.

David W. Lee (Carol Lahman, Enid, Oklahoma, with him on the brief), Comingdeer and Lee, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, for Defendant-Appellee City of Enid.

Marc Edwards, Phillips McFall McCaffrey McVay & Murrah, P.C., Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, for Defendant-Intervenor-Appellee Oklahoma Firefighters Pension and Retirement System.

Before BALDOCK, McKAY, and KELLY, Circuit Judges.

PAUL KELLY, Jr., Circuit Judge.

Plaintiff-Appellant Cecil M. Smith (Smith) appeals from the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Defendant-Appellee City of Enid (the City) and Defendant-Intervenor-Appellee Oklahoma Firefighters Pension and Retirement System (the System) on his 42 U.S.C. § 1983 claims. 1 Mr. Smith also appeals from the district court's refusal to exercise jurisdiction over his supplemental state law claims. See 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3). Our jurisdiction arises under 28 U.S.C. § 1291, and we affirm.

Background

Mr. Smith was employed with the City as a firefighter. By 1989, Mr. Smith had attained the rank of assistant fire chief and had accrued over twenty years of service with the City. As required by Oklahoma statute, the City was a participating municipality in the System, and as an eligible full time firefighter, Mr. Smith was a participating member in the System. Under the System's statutory scheme, member firefighters with twenty or more years of service are eligible to retire and receive a monthly service pension benefit. At any time, retired member firefighters receiving a pension benefit may serve as firefighters for compensation within the state of Oklahoma; they may not, however, continue to receive pension benefits during such service.

In October 1988, Bob Hollander, Executive Director of the System, and Pete Stavrose, the Legislative Director of the Oklahoma State Firefighters Association, held a meeting at the Enid fire station to discuss proposed legislation for a deferred compensation plan for Oklahoma firefighters. Mr. Smith attended this meeting, where it was related that under the proposed legislation firefighters opting to participate in the plan would be required to retire after a set number of years.

On April 24, 1989, a deferred compensation plan for Oklahoma firefighters was enacted into law. It provided, in pertinent part:

  1. In lieu of terminating employment and accepting a service retirement pension ... any member of [the System] who has not less than twenty (20) years of creditable service and who is eligible to receive a service retirement pension may elect to participate in the Oklahoma Firefighters Deferred Option Plan and defer the receipts of benefits in accordance with the provisions of this section.

    ....

  2. The duration of participation in the Oklahoma Firefighters Deferred Option

    Page 1153

    Plan for active firefighters shall not exceed five (5) years.

  3. When a member begins participation in the Oklahoma Firefighters Deferred Option Plan, the contribution of the employee shall cease. The employer contributions shall continue to be paid.... Municipal contributions for employees who elect the Oklahoma Firefighters Deferred Option Plan shall be credited equally to [the System] and to the Oklahoma Firefighters Deferred Option Plan. The monthly retirement benefits that would have been payable had the member elected to cease employment and receive a service retirement shall be paid into the Oklahoma Firefighters Deferred Option Plan account.

    1989 Okla. Sess. Laws 240-41 (codified at Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 11, § 49-106.1 (West Supp.1998)). Mr. Smith received a copy of the newly enacted legislation in bill form, read it, and determined that it did not require him to retire after five years if he participated in the plan. Mr. Smith accordingly decided to opt into the plan, and on October 17, 1989, he drove to the System's offices in Oklahoma City and informed Bob Hollander he wished to sign up for the Deferred Option Plan. Mr. Hollander provided Mr. Smith with the form, and Mr. Smith signed it. The election form provided that participation in the plan was limited to five years and that Mr. Smith's deferred option deposits would cease September 1...

To continue reading

FREE SIGN UP