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RBTTIRN DATE:

SUPERIOR COURT

DOMURAD, HENRY J., JR.

v.
STAFFIEzu, ANTI{OI{Y

JUDICIAL DISTRICT ANSONIA/MILFORD AT MILFORD


MAY 2,201?

OF'

APPLICATION FOR AN INTERT,OCUTORY ORDER IN TTTE NATURtr OF MANDAMUS IN AID OF PENDING ACTION AI\D ORDER TO SHOW CAUSB
The plaintiffin the above-entitled action hereby mal<es application for an interlocutory
order in the nature of mandamus in accordance with his prayer for relief, pursuant to $23-47

of

tiie Connecticut Rules of Court and $52-493 of the Connecticut General Statutes, and
respectfuily requests that the defendant, Anthony Staffieri, be ordered to appear at an eariy date to show cause why the prayer fbr an interlocutory order in the nature of marrdanrus in aid of a pending action should not be granted.

THE PLA

& SGRIGNARI, LLC


127 WHITNEY AVENUE HAMDEN, CT 0651 8

TELEPHONE: 203 -407 -4200 FACSIMILE: 2fi -4a7-42 1 0 JURIS NO. 022230

RNTIJRN DATE:

STIPERIOR COTJRT

DOMURAD, HENRY J., JR.


Y.

JUDICIAL DISTRICT OF ANSONIA/IVIILFORD AT MILFORJ) MAY 2,2012


OATH AND VERIFICATION

STAFFIERI, ANTHONY

Personally appeared, HENRY J. DOMURAD, JR., 6 Devon View Road, Derby, Connecticut and rnade oath to the truth of the matters contained in the foregoing complaint, before me.

Subscribed and swom befole me tliis 2nd day of May, 2012.

Notary

S. S-fu-(a lnuy C*,"ir-rr Ss tti-l Qy,it-; : Af tlzo i{


Ncu-k'l,z-

Public/ffi

RETURN DATtr:

STJPERIOR COURT

DOMURAD,IIENRY J., JR.

v.
STAFFIERI, ANTHOI{Y
COMPLATNT COUNT

.IUDICIAL DISTRICT OF ANSONIA/N{ILFORD AT MILFORD MAY 2,2012

(MANDAMUS) plaintiff, Henry J, Domurad, Jr., is the director of finance of the City of Derby.

1. 2. 3.

The

The defendant, Authony Staffieri, is the mayor of the City of Derby. The plaintiffwas appointed to th.e office of director of finance by vote of the Cily of Derby board of aldermen, upon recommendation of tire defendant, on October 23,2008. Proposed Exhibit A.

4.

Tlie plaintiff and the defendant thereafter entered into a three (3) year wriften
employment contract, commencing November 17, 2008, the date when the plaintiff actually assumed the duties of his offrce.

5,

At the conclusion of the term of the r,witten employment contract on November 17,201
the

1.

plaintiff was permitted to continue in the employ of the City of Derby as the director

of finance enjoying the same salary, benefits and other emoluments of employntent, as provided for in the original wlitten employment contract.

6.

On

April 12"2012, however,

at the end of the workday, the

plaintiffwas sumlnoned to

the defendant's offrce and told by the defendant that the plaintiff was "not worldng out"

and flrat his contract was not being renewed; defendant then demanded that the

plaintiff

"clean out his off,rce" and give the defendant his heys to City Hall.
7

The plaintiff stated to the defendant that he could not fire him without the approval of the board of aldermen. pursuant to section 32-61 of the Code of the City of Derby; the

plaintiff also expressed his reasonable expectation that, if terminated, he would

be

entitled to substantial severance benefits czuried over or implied from the original written employment conh'act.

8.

The defendant responded to the plaintiff s legal and contractual claims witli tire coru11ent
that he would have corporation counsel look into the rnatter, and that the letter

of

termination would be available to the plaintiff the next day, April 13, 2012,

9.

On

April 13,2072,

the

plaintiff returned to City Hali to pick

r-rp

the letter of tennination.

which read as follows; Henry, Your Employment Contract has not been renewed and your lefter of resignation has been accepted. I thank you fbr your seruice and wish you well in his (sic) future,

10.

I(nowing flrat he had not resigned, and that the subjeet of lesignation had not even been
discussed in the brief meeting with the defendant on

April 12,2012,

the

plaintiff

irnrnediately objected to the letter by writing the foliowing on it:

Mayor, Let it be known that I did not resign! You said that I was not working out.
Proposed Exhibit B.

11,

The plaintiff then proceeded to scan/e-mail his rernonskance to both the defendant and

corporation counsel, and personally gave a hard copy of the same to flre defendant's administrative aide for the defendalt; the plaintiff then called the president of the board of aldermen to relate rvhat liad transpired, and to assure him that he did not resigr.
12.

That same evening. the Valley lndependent Sentinel published online an undated letter resiguation purportedl-v written and signed by the plaintiff for the purpose represented

of

tlrerein Qst'oposed Exhibit Q; more particularly, as subsequently reported by the


defendaut to the media and again published online by the Valley Independent Sentinel,

tlie defendant "watched

N4r'.

Domurad sign the letter in front of him at the end of tlie

workday on April 12 ... he submitted the letler of resignation and I accepted it."
Propased Exhibit C.
13.

From the date of tlie approval of his appointnrent to the office of director of finance of tlie

City of Derby by the boald of aldennen on October23,2008 to the date of this


complaint, the plaintiff never prepared, signed or submitted a letter of resignation to the
defendant or to anyone else. or otirerwise expressed a present intention to renounce or

relinquish his office.


14.

Section 7-103 of the Connecticut General Statr-rtes prescribes that "any ... appointed ...

city ... officer . .. desiring to resign from liis office shall subnrit his resigrration in rnniting
to the toun1, city ol borough clerli. as the case lray be . ..

. Any such resignation

shall

become effective upon the riate specifieC therein or. if no date is so specified, upon the
date of its submission.

15,

No letter of resignation by the plaintiff was submitted by him, or allyone authorized by


him, to the Derby town c1erk, and none has been received by the Derby town clerk, notwithstanding any attempted scireme or artifice by the defendant unlawfully to bring
about the plaintiff s temrination by resignation.

16.

Section 32-61of flre Code of the City of Derby provides that the "Finance Director may
be removed from office upon the recomrnendation of the Mayor subject to the approval

of tlre Board of Aldermen." Proposed Exhibit D. t7,

At no time did the defendant recommend to tlie board of aldennen of the City,' of Derbl'
that the plaintiffbe removed as director of finance, md at no time did the board of aldermen approve the removal of the plaintiff as director of finance.

18.

On April 26,2072, the board of aldermen of the City of Derby, on its own rnotion, voted not to accept the plaintiff s putative resignation, the president of the board of aldermen stating that "this board does not recognize ally suspect resignation or firing, therefore Mr. Doruurad is still the Finance Director of the City of Derby." Proposed Exltibit E,

19.

Ori

April 27,2A12, the

defendant, pursuant to section 23 of tlie Charter, vetoed the

aforesaid vote talcen by the board of aldemren, which the board of aldemen may overide
at or before its next regular rneeting in accordance with the same section of the Charter.

Proposed Exhibit F.
)\).

Howevet, in'espective of whether or not the defendant's veto is overridden, there stil1will
exist no resignation in effect by the plaintifffor the defendant to accept and no approval

by the boald of aldermen that the plaintiffbe removed from office; yet, the plaintiff continues to be denied the ciear legal right to his office for no riglrtful purpose and

unlaw{ully by the defendant's refusal to perform lvhat amounts to

ministerial duty

of

lis office in reinstating the plaintiff

as director of finance.

21.

The Cha:1er and Code olthe City of Derby is the fountainhead of mturicipal powers in the City of Derby, both creating power and ordaining the form in which it rnust be
exercised.

22.

Section l2 of the Charter of the City of Derby requires that tire defendant, as mayor, "be

vigilant in the execution and enforcernent of the laws and ordinances of the City of
Derby."

23.

In excluding the plaintiff from liis office and declaling without authority that he has been
terminated (variously by nou-renewal of his contract or by his own hand), in violation
State statute and the Charter ard Ordinances of the City of Derby as aforesaid, the

of

defendant tlueatens the orderly process of government and disserves the public interest.

24.

The unilateral act of the defendant, a public officer, in terminating the employment of the

plaintiff based on an instrrulent that is a nLrliity and ongoing violations of State and local
larvs is illegal, in derogation of statutorl, authority and an injury to the citizens of Derby.

WHEREFORE, the plaintiff pravs for the issuance of an order in the nature of a
mandamus requiring the delendant to execute and enflolce, and dischalge the duties inrposed upon him as mayor of the City of Derb)' b),, tlie Cliarter and Ordinances pursuant to $12 of said

Charter, and to reinstate, or permit the reinstatement without interference by him as mayor, of the

plaintiff to the offrce of director of finance of the City of Derby; as well as an order in the nature
of a mandamus in aid of this matter during its pendency pursuant to Connecticut Ruies of Court
523-47 and $52-493 of the Connecticut General Statutes,

coqNT Two (WRONGFUL DTSCHARGE)


l"-24. Palagraphs I tluough 24 of Count I ale hereby made paragraphs I tluough 24 of
this, Count II, as if fully set forth herein.

25.

The discharge of the plaintiffby the defendant was wrongful in that it

conhavened a cleal mandate(s) of public policy.

WHERIFORE,

the

plaintiff clairns:

l. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Back pay; Reinstatement: Compensatory damages;

Punitive or exemplary damages; and

Attomev's fees.

COUNT

III

(BRJACH OF COVENANT OF GOOD FAITH AND FAIR DEALING)

1-24. Paragraphs 1 through 24 of Count I are hereby made palagraphs i-24 of this,
Count III, as

if fuliy

set forth herein.

25.

The acts of tire defendant in discliarging the plaintiff by usurping the power of the

board of aldermen and disregarding the Charler and Code of the City of Derby and section 7-143

of tlre Comecticut General Statutes involved a dishonest puryose, sinister motive or reckless
indifference to the interests of the plaintiff, and/or actual or constructive fraud.

WHEREFORE, the plaintiff clairns:

1. 2. 3. 4, 5.

Back pay; Reinstatement; Compensatory damages;

Punitive or exemplary damages; and

Attorney's fees.
THE PLA

M, GESMONDE SMONDE, PIETROSIIVIONE & SGzuGNARI, LLC 3I27 WHITNEY AVENUE FIAMDEN, CT 06518 TELEPHONE: 203 -4 07 -4240 FACSIMILE : 2a3-407 -4210 JUzuS NO, 022230