AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSNS., INC. v. MICHIGAN PUB. SERV. COMM'N

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Case Basics
Docket No. 
03-1230
Petitioner 
American Trucking Associations, Inc. and USF Holland, Inc.
Respondent 
Michigan Public Service Commission, et al.
Consolidation 
Mid-Con Freight Systems, Inc. v. Michigan Pub. Serv. Comm'n, No. 03-1234
Advocates
(argued the cause for Respondents)
(argued the cause for Respondents)
(argued the cause for Petitioners in 03-1234)
(argued the cause for Petitioners in 03-1230)
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Facts of the Case 

Michigan law required every truck engaged in intrastate commercial hauling to pay a flat $100 annual fee. Interstate trucking companies asked Michigan courts to invalidate the fee, claiming the flat fee discriminated against interstate carriers and imposed an unconstitutional burden on interstate trade (in violation of the "dormant" commerce clause). They pointed to the fact that trucks carrying both interstate and intrastate loads engaged in intrastate business less than trucks that only haul within Michigan. State courts refused to invalidate the fee.

Question 

Did a Michigan law requiring every truck engaged in intrastate commercial hauling to pay a fee violate burden interstate trade in violation of the dormant commerce clause?

Conclusion 
Decision: 9 votes for Michigan Pub. Serv. Comm'n, 0 vote(s) against
Legal provision: Article 1, Section 8, Paragraph 3: Interstate Commerce Clause

No. In a 9-0 opinion delivered by Justice Stephen Breyer, the Court held that Michigan's fee did not violate the dormant commerce clause because the fee was imposed only on intrastate transactions and did not facially discriminate against interstate or out-of-state activities or enterprises. The dormant commerce clause did not, Breyer wrote, ban such a "neutral" and "locally focused fee."

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AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSNS., INC. v. MICHIGAN PUB. SERV. COMM'N. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 04 April 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/2000-2009/2004/2004_03_1230>.
AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSNS., INC. v. MICHIGAN PUB. SERV. COMM'N, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/2000-2009/2004/2004_03_1230 (last visited April 4, 2014).
"AMERICAN TRUCKING ASSNS., INC. v. MICHIGAN PUB. SERV. COMM'N," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed April 4, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/2000-2009/2004/2004_03_1230.