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U.S. Supreme Court

Railway Labor Executives' Assn. v. United States, 339 U.S. 142 (1950)

Railway Labor Executives' Association v. United States

No. 337

Argued February 14, 1950

Decided March 27, 1950

339 U.S. 142


1. The Interstate Commerce Commission, in approving a consolidation of railroad facilities under § 5(2)(f) of the Interstate Commerce Act, has the power to require a fair and equitable arrangement to protect the interests of railroad employees beyond four years from the effective date of the order. Pp. 339 U. S. 143-155.

2. An order of the Interstate Commerce Commission, effective May 17, 1948, approving a consolidation of railroad facilities incident to the construction of a passenger terminal at New Orleans, required the construction to commence by December 31, 1948 (later extended to December 31, 1949), and to be completed by December 31, 1953 (later extended to December 31, 1954). It contained detailed provisions for the compensatory protection of employees affected by the consolidation, but all such protection was to end by May 17, 1952. Many employees affected by the consolidation would not be displaced until the completion of the project, and therefore would receive no compensatory protection.

Held: neither such discrimination nor such insubstantial "protection" is consistent with the purpose and history of § 5(2)(f) of the Interstate Commerce Act. Pp. 339 U. S. 143-155.

3. While the Commission's interpretation of § 5(2)(f) as limiting employee protection to a maximum of four years from the effective date of the order is entitled to weight, its decisions relied upon here were made in cases in which the adverse effects of the approved transactions were to be felt by the employees long before the expiration of such four years, and those decisions are not persuasive in the present case. Pp. 339 U. S. 154-155.

84 F.Supp. 178 reversed.

In a suit to set aside part of an order of the Interstate Commerce Commission, a three-judge District Court granted defendants' motions for summary judgment and dismissed the complaint. 84 F.Supp. 178. On direct appeal to this Court, reversed and remanded, p. 339 U. S. 155. chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 339 U. S. 143

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