MIDDLE TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) — A lifeguard who was fired at age 52 and sued a New Jersey Shore town for age discrimination has been awarded nearly $130,000.

Paul McCracken was fired in 2011. He claimed Ocean City had increased running and swimming test requirements as part of a scheme to force older lifeguards to retire or face reduced hours, which would cut their salaries and ultimately affect their pensions.

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A Cape May County jury recently ruled for McCracken, awarding the Linwood resident $127,998.

An Ocean City spokesman said Wednesday the city believes McCracken’s claim was frivolous and is evaluating its legal options.

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