Nashville, C. & St.L. Ry. v. Tennessee
262 U.S. 318 (1923)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Nashville, C. & St.L. Ry. v. Tennessee, 262 U.S. 318 (1923)

Nashville, Chattanooga & St. Louis Railway v. Tennessee, 262 U.S. 318 (1923)

Nashville, Chattanooga & St. Louis Railway v. Tennessee

Nos. 396 and 429

Argued April 11, 12, 1923

Decided May 21, 1923

262 U.S. 318

Syllabus

1. Section 22 of the Act to Regulate Commerce, as amended, in declaring that nothing in the act shall prevent the carriage of property free, or at reduced rates, for the United States, state, or municipal governments, does not in effect deny to the Interstate Commerce Commission power to prohibit such reduced rates when they result

Page 262 U. S. 319

in unjust discrimination or in undue prejudice to interstate commerce. P. 262 U. S. 320.

2. The object of this section was to settle beyond doubt that the preferential treatment of certain classes of shippers and travelers in matters therein recited is not necessarily prohibited; it limits or defines the requirement of equality imposed in other sections of the act, and so preserves the right theretofore enjoyed by the carrier of granting preferential treatment to particular classes, in certain cases, and in this sense only is permissive, but it confers no right upon any shipper or traveler, nor any new right upon the carrier. P. 262 U. S. 323.

3. The State of Tennessee authorized increases of intrastate freight rates to correspond with a level of interstate rates authorized by the Interstate Commerce Commission, but excluded rates on stone and gravel when for use in building public highways and consigned to federal, state, county, and municipal authorities. The Interstate Commerce Commission, on complaint of a carrier, found that the exception produced illegal discrimination against interstate commerce and undue prejudice to persons and localities engaged in such commerce and ordered increase of the rates.

Held: (a) That the findings are conclusive, the evidence on which the Commission acted not having been introduced in this suit. P. 262 U. S. 324. (b) That the order was valid. Id.

284 F. 371 reversed.

Appeals from a decree of the district court declaring void and enjoining the enforcement of an order of the Interstate Commerce Commission. The State of Tennessee and its Railroad and Public Utilities Commission brought the suit against the United States to have the order set aside. The Interstate Commerce Commission and three carriers affected intervened as defendants.

Page 262 U. S. 320

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