Conshohocken’s Former Borough Manager is Suing the Borough

It was just about two years ago that Conshohocken’s Borough Council fired Fran Marabella, who had served as Borough Manager, and chief finance officer, for about eight years. After he was let go, we posted a story detailing how poorly it was handled (please read, it really sets this story up).

Now, according to an article on Philadelphia magazine’s website, Marabella is back and suing the Borough for breach of contract, age discrimination, etc. From the article:

According to the lawsuit, filed in Philadelphia’s federal court, Marabella had never received a negative review and was fired without being given a reason for his termination. He was less than two years away from being eligible to retire with lifetime health benefits for him and his family.

Just before Marabella was fired, he alleges that the borough tried to force him to retire and that a 43-year-old office manager was promoted to assistant borough manger “just in case something happened” to Marabella, as he says he was told. The lawsuit also claims that his employer told him that the borough needed “someone who will take us forward for the next 10 years,” and it cites comments that officials made in the press at the time of his termination, including one council member who said, “We feel it was a little too much for him.”

Jennifer Guckin, the person who was promoted to Assistant Borough Manager, served as interim Borough Manager. Richard Manafredi eventually replaced Marabella as Borough Manager and continues to serve in that position. The Philadelphia magazine article states that someone was hired to serve as Chief Finance Officer, but there is no one with that title listed on the Borough’s website.

The article from Philadelphia magazine concludes with:

Marabella says that his contract entitled him to full retirement benefits unless he was fired for just cause, which he says he was not, and so he is suing for breach of contract. His lawsuit also claims age discrimination, among other offenses. He is seeking unspecified damages over $150,000.

We are going to try to get a copy of the lawsuit. More to come.