Colorado v. United States
Annotate this Case
271 U.S. 153 (1926)
U.S. Supreme Court
Colorado v. United States, 271 U.S. 153 (1926)
Colorado v. United States
Argued March 5, 8, 1926
Decided May 3, 1926
271 U.S. 153
1. Under § 1, pars. 18-20, of the Interstate Commerce Act, as amended by Transportation Act, 1920, § 402, the Interstate Commerce Commission has power to authorize abandonment, as respects both intrastate and interstate traffic, of a branch line of railroad lying wholly within the the owning company's incorporation upon the ground that local conditions are such that public convenience and necessity do not require continued operation, and that such operation will result in large deficits constituting an undue burden upon interstate commerce. P. 271 U. S. 161.
2. The exercise of federal power in authorizing such abandonment is not an invasion of the field reserved by the Constitution to the state, for the paramount power of Congress over interstate commerce enables it to determine to what extent and in what manner intrastate service must be subordinated in order that interstate service may be adequately rendered. P. 271 U. S. 165.
3. In a suit to enjoin an order of the Interstate Commerce Commission, the court may consider the objections that essential findings were not made and that findings made were not supported by evidence if all the evidence before the Commission was introduced in the court below and is substantially incorporated in the record on appeal. P. 271 U. S. 166.
4. While the constitutional basis of authority to issue the certificate of abandonment is the power of Congress to regulate interstate commerce, the Act does not make issuance of the certificate conditional upon a finding that continued operation will result in discrimination against interstate commerce, or that it will result in a denial of just compensation for the use in intrastate commerce of the property of the carrier within the state, or that it will result in a denial of such compensation for the property within the state used in commerce intrastate and interstate. P. 271 U. S. 167.
5. The sole test prescribed by the Act is that abandonment be consistent with public necessity and convenience; in determining this, the Commission must have regard for the needs of both intrastate and interstate commerce. P. 271 U. S. 168.
Appeal from a decree of the district court which dismissed the bill brought by the State of Colorado against the United States, the Interstate Commerce Commission, and the Colorado & Southern Railway Company seeking to enjoin and in part set aside an order of the Commission -- a certificate permitting the railway to abandon a branch line in Colorado.
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