New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann,
285 U.S. 262 (1932)

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U.S. Supreme Court

New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann, 285 U.S. 262 (1932)

New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann

No 463

Argued February 19, 1932

Decided March 21, 1932

285 U.S. 262


1. The business of manufacturing ice and selling it is essentially a private business and not so affected with a public interest that a legislature may constitutionally limit the number of those who may engage in it in order to control competition. Pp. 285 U. S. 273 et seq.

2. An Oklahoma statute, declaring that the manufacture, sale and distribution of ice is a public business, forbids anyone to engage in it without first having procured a license from a state commission; no license is to issue without proof of necessity for the manufacture, sale or distribution of ice in the community or place to which the application relates, and if the facilities already existing and licensed at such place are sufficient to meet the public needs therein, the commission may deny the application. Held, repugnant to the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. P. 285 U. S. 278.

3. A state law infringing the liberty guaranteed to individuals by the Constitution can not be upheld upon the ground that the State is conducting a legislative experiment. P. 285 U. S. 279.

52 F.2d 349, affirmed.

Appeal from a decree sustaining the dismissal by the District Court, 42 F.2d 913, of a bill by the appellant, a licensed ice company, to enjoin the defendant from engaging in the ice business at a place in Oklahoma without having first procured a license.

Page 285 U. S. 271

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