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Can A State’S Water Rights Be Dammed? Environmental Flows And Federal Dams In The Supreme Court, Reed D. Benson May 2019

Can A State’S Water Rights Be Dammed? Environmental Flows And Federal Dams In The Supreme Court, Reed D. Benson

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

Interstate rivers are subject to the doctrine of equitable apportionment, whereby the Supreme Court seeks to ensure that all states that share such rivers get a fair portion of their benefits. The Court has rarely issued an equitable apportionment decree, however, and there is little law on whether the doctrine protects river flows for environmental purposes. The ongoing Florida v. Georgia litigation in the Supreme Court raises this issue, as Florida seeks to limit consumptive uses by upstream Georgia to preserve flows in the Apalachicola River, which provide both economic and environmental benefits. This Article summarizes both the equitable apportionment …


Accusers As Adjudicators In Agency Enforcement Proceedings, Andrew N. Vollmer Oct 2018

Accusers As Adjudicators In Agency Enforcement Proceedings, Andrew N. Vollmer

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

Largely because of the Supreme Court’s 1975 decision in Withrow v. Larkin, the accepted view for decades has been that a federal administrative agency does not violate the Due Process Clause by combining the functions of investigating, charging, and then resolving allegations that a person violated the law. Many federal agencies have this structure, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Federal Trade Commission.

In 2016, the Supreme Court decided Williams v. Pennsylvania, a judicial disqualification case that, without addressing administrative agencies, nonetheless raises a substantial question about one aspect of the combination of functions at agencies. …


Both Sides Of The Rock: Justice Gorsuch And The Seminole Rock Deference Doctrine, Kevin O. Leske May 2018

Both Sides Of The Rock: Justice Gorsuch And The Seminole Rock Deference Doctrine, Kevin O. Leske

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

Despite being early in his tenure on the U.S. Supreme Court, Justice Neil Gorsuch has already made his presence known. His October 16, 2017 statement respecting the denial of certiorari in Scenic America, Inc. v. Department of Transportation garnered significant attention within the legal community. Joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, Justice Gorsuch questioned whether the Court’s bedrock 2-part test from Chevron, U.S.A. v. NRDC—whereby courts must defer to an agency’s reasonable interpretation of an ambiguous statutory term—should apply in the case.

Justice Gorsuch’s criticism of the Chevron doctrine was not a surprise. In the …


Chevron In The Circuit Courts, Kent Barnett, Christopher J. Walker Oct 2017

Chevron In The Circuit Courts, Kent Barnett, Christopher J. Walker

Michigan Law Review

This Article presents findings from the most comprehensive empirical study to date on how the federal courts of appeals have applied Chevrondeference— the doctrine under which courts defer to a federal agency’s reasonable interpretation of an ambiguous statute that it administers. Based on 1,558 agency interpretations the circuit courts reviewed from 2003 through 2013 (where they cited Chevron), we found that the circuit courts overall upheld 71% of interpretations and applied Chevrondeference 77% of the time. But there was nearly a twenty-five-percentage-point difference in agency-win rates when the circuit courts applied Chevrondeference than when they did …


Defining Ambiguity In Broken Statutory Frameworks And Its Limits On Agency Action, Amanda Urban Oct 2016

Defining Ambiguity In Broken Statutory Frameworks And Its Limits On Agency Action, Amanda Urban

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

“The Problem” occurs when a statute’s provisions become contradictory or unworkable in the context of new or unforeseen phenomena, yet the statute mandates agency action. The application of an unambiguous statutory provision may become problematic or unclear. Similarly, unambiguous provisions may become inconsistent given a particular application of the statute. During the same term, in Scialabba and UARG, the Supreme Court performed a Chevron review of agency interpretations of statutes facing three variations of the Problem, which this Note characterizes as direct conflict, internal inconsistency, and unworkability. In each case, the Court defined ambiguity in various, nontraditional ways and …


Delegating Tax, James R. Hines Jr., Kyle D. Logue Oct 2015

Delegating Tax, James R. Hines Jr., Kyle D. Logue

Michigan Law Review

Congress delegates extensive and growing lawmaking authority to federal administrative agencies in areas other than taxation, but tightly limits the scope of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Treasury regulatory discretion in the tax area, specifically not permitting these agencies to select or adjust tax rates. This Article questions why tax policy does and should differ from other policy areas in this respect, noting some of the potential policy benefits of delegation. Greater delegation of tax lawmaking authority would allow administrative agencies to apply their expertise to fiscal policy and afford timely adjustment to changing economic circumstances. Furthermore, delegation of the …


The Nlrb, The Courts, The Administrative Procedures Act, And Chevron: Now And Then, Theodore J. St. Antoine Jul 2015

The Nlrb, The Courts, The Administrative Procedures Act, And Chevron: Now And Then, Theodore J. St. Antoine

Articles

Decisions of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), like those of other administrative agencies, are subject to review by the federal judiciary. Standards of review have evolved over time. The Administrative Procedure Act of 1946 provides that administrative decisions must be in accord with law and required procedure, not arbitrary or capricious, not contrary to constitutional rights, within an agency's statutory jurisdiction, and supported by substantial evidence. In practice, more attention is paid to two Supreme Court decisions, Skidmore (1944) and Chevron (1984). For many years Chevron seemed the definitive test. A court must follow a clear intent of Congress, …


Fun With Administrative Law: A Game For Lawyers And Judges, Adam Babich May 2015

Fun With Administrative Law: A Game For Lawyers And Judges, Adam Babich

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

The practice of law is not a game. Administrative law in particular can implicate important issues that impact people’s health, safety, and welfare and change business’ profitability or even viability. Nonetheless, it can seem like a game. This is because courts rarely explain administrative law rulings in terms of the public purposes and policies at issue in lawsuits. Instead, the courts’ administrative law opinions tend to turn on arcane interpretive doctrines with silly names, such as the “Chevron two-step” or “Chevron step zero.” To advance doctrinal arguments, advocates and courts engage in linguistic debates that resemble a smokescreen—tending to obscure …


Too Many Cooks In The Climate Change Kitchen: The Case For An Administrative Remedy For Damages Caused By Increased Greenhouse Gas Concentrations, Benjamin Reese May 2015

Too Many Cooks In The Climate Change Kitchen: The Case For An Administrative Remedy For Damages Caused By Increased Greenhouse Gas Concentrations, Benjamin Reese

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

Recent federal and state court decisions have made clear that federal common law claims against emitters of greenhouse gases are not sustainable; however, those same courts seem to have given state common law tort claims the green light, at least if the claims are brought in the state where the polluters are located. This Note contends that such suits are not an adequate remedy for those injured by climate change because they will face nearly insurmountable barriers in state court, and because there are major policy-level drawbacks to relying on state tort law rather than a federal solution. This Note …


Unpacking Eme Homer: Cost, Proportionality, And Emissions Reductions, Daniel A. Farber May 2015

Unpacking Eme Homer: Cost, Proportionality, And Emissions Reductions, Daniel A. Farber

Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law

Interstate air pollution can prevent even the most diligent downwind state from attaining the air quality levels required by federal law. Allocating responsibility for emissions cuts when multiple upwind states contribute to downwind air quality violations presents a particularly difficult problem. Justice Ginsburg’s opinion for the Court in EPA v. EME Homer City Generator, L.P., gives EPA broad discretion to craft regulatory solutions for this problem. Although the specific statutory provision at issue was deceptively simple, the underlying problem was especially complex because of the large number of states involved. Indeed, neither the majority opinion nor the dissent seems to …


The Puzzling Presumption Of Reviewability, Nicholas Bagley Mar 2014

The Puzzling Presumption Of Reviewability, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

The presumption in favor of judicial review of agency action is a cornerstone of administrative law, accepted by courts and commentators alike as both legally appropriate and obviously desirable. Yet the presumption is puzzling. As with any canon of statutory construction that serves a substantive end, it should find a source in history, positive law, the Constitution, or sound policy considerations. None of these, however, offers a plausible justification for the presumption. As for history, the sort of judicial review that the presumption favors - appellate-style arbitrariness review - was not only unheard of prior to the twentieth century, but …


The Puzzling Presumption Of Reviewability, Nicholas Bagley Mar 2014

The Puzzling Presumption Of Reviewability, Nicholas Bagley

Articles

The presumption in favor of judicial review of agency action is a cornerstone of administrative law, accepted by courts and commentators alike as both legally appropriate and obviously desirable. Yet the presumption is puzzling. As with any canon of statutory construction that serves a substantive end, it should find a source in history, positive law, the Constitution, or sound policy considerations. None of these, however, offers a plausible justification for the presumption. As for history, the sort of judicial review that the presumption favors - appellate-style arbitrariness review - was not only unheard of prior to the twentieth century, but …


The 'Compelling Government Interest' In School Diversity: Rebuilding The Case For An Affirmative Government Role, Philip Tegeler Jan 2014

The 'Compelling Government Interest' In School Diversity: Rebuilding The Case For An Affirmative Government Role, Philip Tegeler

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

How far does Justice Kennedy’s “moral and ethical obligation” to avoid racial isolation extend? Does the obligation flow primarily from Supreme Court case law, does it derive from an evolving consensus in the social sciences, or does it also have a statutory basis in Title VI and other federal law? In addition to its value as a justification for non-individualized, race-conscious remedial efforts by state and local governments, does the compelling interest identified in Parents Involved also suggest an affirmative duty on the part of the federal government? And if so, how far does this affirmative duty extend, and how …


The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission And Structural Reform Of The American Workplace, Margo Schlanger, Pauline T. Kim Jan 2014

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission And Structural Reform Of The American Workplace, Margo Schlanger, Pauline T. Kim

Articles

In one of its most-watched recent cases, the United States Supreme Court struck down a class action alleging that Wal-Mart stores discriminated against female employees in pay and promotion decisions. The plaintiffs alleged that Wal-Mart’s corporate culture and highly discretionary decision-making practices led to sex discrimination on a company-wide basis, and they sought injunctive relief as well as backpay for individual employees. Reversing the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the Supreme Court held in Wal-Mart v. Dukes that the proposed class failed to meet the requirements for class action certification under Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of …


The Real Issue Behind Stanford V. Roche: Faulty Conceptions Of University Assignment Policies Stemming From The 1947 Biddle Report, Sean M. O'Connor Jan 2013

The Real Issue Behind Stanford V. Roche: Faulty Conceptions Of University Assignment Policies Stemming From The 1947 Biddle Report, Sean M. O'Connor

Michigan Telecommunications & Technology Law Review

The recent Supreme Court decision in Stanford v. Roche laid bare a faulty assumption of the federal research funding system. Government patent policy for federally funded research relies on "contractors"--the recipients of federal funding--to secure patent assignments from their employees. While this practice was routine for private firms and nonprofit research institutions, it was not for universities. This was in part based on the relationship of faculty and other researchers to universities that differed from industry employment relationships. The roots of this faulty assumption can be traced to the seminal 1947 Biddle Report. Detailed monographs drafted as appendices to the …


Inside Agency Preemption, Catherine M. Sharkey Feb 2012

Inside Agency Preemption, Catherine M. Sharkey

Michigan Law Review

A subtle shift has taken place in the mechanics of preemption, the doctrine that determines when federal law displaces state law. In the past, Congress was the leading actor, and courts and commentators focused almost exclusively on the precise wording of its statutory directives as a clue to its intent to displace state law. Federal agencies were, if not ignored, certainly no more than supporting players. But the twenty-first century has witnessed a role reversal. Federal agencies now play the dominant role in statutory interpretation. The U.S. Supreme Court has recognized the ascendancy of federal agencies in preemption disputes-an ascendancy …


Tax Exceptionalism: Wanted Dead Or Alive, Gene Magidenko Jan 2012

Tax Exceptionalism: Wanted Dead Or Alive, Gene Magidenko

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform Caveat

Tax law has just not been the same since January 2011. Did Congress pass earthshaking legislation affecting the Internal Revenue Code? Did the IRS dramatically change regulations? If only it were that exciting. Instead, eight jurists sitting at One First Street in our nation’s capital transformed tax law in a less bloody, but no less profound, way. The thought must have gone through many a tax mind – is tax exceptionalism dead?


Unfit For Prime Time: Why Cable Television Regulations Cannot Perform Trinko's 'Antitrust Function', Keith Klovers Dec 2011

Unfit For Prime Time: Why Cable Television Regulations Cannot Perform Trinko's 'Antitrust Function', Keith Klovers

Michigan Law Review

Until recently, regulation and antitrust law operated in tandem to safeguard competition in regulated industries. In three recent decisions-Trinko, Credit Suisse, and Linkline-the Supreme Court limited the operation of the antitrust laws when regulation "performs the antitrust function." This Note argues that cable programming regulations-which are in some respects factually similar to the telecommunications regulations at issue in Trinko and Linkline-do not perform the antitrust function because they cannot deter anticompetitive conduct. As a result, Trinko and its siblings should not foreclose antitrust claims for damages that arise out of certain cable programming disputes.


Environmental Deliberative Democracy And The Search For Administrative Legitimacy: A Legal, Positivism Approach, Michael Ray Harris Feb 2011

Environmental Deliberative Democracy And The Search For Administrative Legitimacy: A Legal, Positivism Approach, Michael Ray Harris

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

The failure of regulatory systems over the past two decades to lessen the environment degradation associated with modern human economic output has begun to undermine the legitimacy of environmental lawmaking in the United States and around the world. Recent scholarship suggests that reversal of this trend will require a breach of the environmental administrative apparatus by democratization of a particular kind, namely the inclusion of greater public discourse within the context of regulatory decision-making. This Article examines this claim through the lens of modern legal positivism. Legal positivism provides the tools necessary to test for and identify the specfic structural …


Reflections On Section 5 Of The Ftc Act And The Ftc's Case Against Intel, Daniel A. Crane Jan 2010

Reflections On Section 5 Of The Ftc Act And The Ftc's Case Against Intel, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

The Federal Trade Commission’s (“FTC’s”) unprecedented enforcement action against Intel raises profound issues concerning the scope of the FTC’s powers to give a construction to Section 5 of the FTC Act that goes beyond the substantive reach of the Sherman Act. While I have urged the FTC to assert such independence from the Sherman Act, this is the wrong case to make a break. Indeed, if anything, Intel poses a risk of seriously setting back the development of an independent Section 5 power by provoking a hostile appellate court to rebuke the FTC’s effort and cabin the FTC’s powers in …


The Hundred-Years War: The Ongoing Battle Between Courts And Agencies Over The Right To Interpret Federal Law, Nancy M. Modesitt Oct 2009

The Hundred-Years War: The Ongoing Battle Between Courts And Agencies Over The Right To Interpret Federal Law, Nancy M. Modesitt

All Faculty Scholarship

Since the Supreme Court’s 1984 Chevron decision, the primary responsibility for interpreting federal statutes has increasingly resided with federal agencies in the first instance rather than with the federal courts. In 2005, the Court reinforced this approach by deciding National Telecommunications Ass'n v. Brand X Internet Services, which legitimized the agency practice of interpreting federal statutes in a manner contrary to the federal courts' established interpretation, so long as the agency interpretation is entitled to deference under the well-established Chevron standard. In essence, agencies are free to disregard federal court precedent in these circumstances. This Article analyzes the question left …


Linkline's Institutional Suspicions, Daniel A. Crane Jan 2009

Linkline's Institutional Suspicions, Daniel A. Crane

Articles

Antitrust scholars are having fun again. Not so long ago, they were the poor, redheaded stepchildren of the legal academy, either pining for the older days of rigorous antitrust enforcement or trying to kill off what was left of the enterprise. Other law professors felt sorry for them, ignored them, or both. But now antitrust is making a comeback of sorts. In one heady week in May of 2009, a front-page story in the New York Times reported the dramatic decision of Christine Varney-the Obama Administration's new Antitrust Division head at the Department of Justice-to jettison the entire report on …


Securities Law And The New Deal Justices, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson Jan 2009

Securities Law And The New Deal Justices, Adam C. Pritchard, Robert B. Thompson

Articles

In this Article, we explore the role of the New Deal Justices in enacting, defending, and interpreting the federal securities laws. Although we canvass most of the Court's securities law decisions from 1935 to 1955, we focus in particular on PUHCA, an act now lost to history for securities practitioners and scholars. At the time of the New Deal, PUHCA was the key point of engagement for defining the judicial view toward New Deal securities legislation. Taming the power of Wall Street required not just the concurrence of the legislative branch, but also the Supreme Court, a body that the …


The California Greenhouse Gas Waiver Decision And Agency Interpretation: A Response To Galle And Seidenfeld, Nina A. Mendelson Jan 2008

The California Greenhouse Gas Waiver Decision And Agency Interpretation: A Response To Galle And Seidenfeld, Nina A. Mendelson

Articles

Professors Brian Galle and Mark Seidenfeld add some important strands to the debate on agency preemption, particularly in their detailed documentation of the potential advantages agencies may possess in deliberating on preemption compared with Congress and the courts. As they note, the quality of agency deliberation matters to two different debates. First, should an agency interpretation of statutory language to preempt state law receive Chevron deference in the courts, as other agency interpretations may, or should some lesser form of deference be given? Second, should a general statutory authorization to an agency to administer a program and to issue rules …


Drugged, Carl E. Schneider Jul 2006

Drugged, Carl E. Schneider

Articles

The Supreme Court's recent decision in Gonzales v. Oregon, like its decision last year in Gonzales v. Raich (the "medical marijuana" case), again raises questions about the bioethical consequences of the Controlled Substances Act. When, in 1970, Congress passed that act, it placed problematic drugs in one of five "schedules," and it authorized the U.S. attorney general to add or subtract drugs from the schedules. Drugs in schedule II have both a medical use and a high potential for abuse. Doctors may prescribe such drugs if they "obtain from the Attorney General a registration issued in accordance with the …


Loss Of Protection As Injury In Fact: An Approach To Establishing Standing To Challenge Environmental Planning Decisions, Miles A. Yanick Apr 1996

Loss Of Protection As Injury In Fact: An Approach To Establishing Standing To Challenge Environmental Planning Decisions, Miles A. Yanick

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

As currently interpreted by the United States Supreme Court, Article III of the Constitution creates a significant hurdle for plaintiff citizen groups seeking standing to challenge environmental planning or management decisions. In particular, plaintiffs have had difficulty in making the required showing of an 'injury in fact" where an agency has not yet approved a site-specific action but has approved only a general plan for an area to govern future site-specific actions. The Supreme Court has not articulated a clear rule for standing to challenge the latter type of agency decision making, and the courts of appeals for the various …


The Delegation Doctrine: Could The Court Give It Substance?, David Schoenbrod Apr 1985

The Delegation Doctrine: Could The Court Give It Substance?, David Schoenbrod

Michigan Law Review

Part I of this Article demonstrates the need for a new approach to the delegation doctrine. It shows that the Court has failed to articulate a coherent test of improper delegation and that the alternative tests offered by commentators are not sufficient. Part II then sets forth a proposed test of improper delegation. The basic principles of an approach prohibiting delegations of legislative power are outlined and illustrated. This Article does not, however, attempt anything so grand as to suggest a final definition of the doctrine or to pass broadly on the validity of statutes. Such an encompassing analysis is …


Justice And The Bureaucratization Of Appellate Courts, Joseph Vining Jan 1982

Justice And The Bureaucratization Of Appellate Courts, Joseph Vining

Articles

The author notes the growing bureaucratization of appellate justice in the United States and, in particular, the drafting of opinions by law clerks rather than by judges. Taking the Supreme Court of the United States as an example, and comparing its internal procedure with that of large administrative agencies, he questions whether the method of analysis familiarly used by lawyers to arrive at an authoritative statement of law is applicable to legal texts bureaucratically produced. He suggests that legal method and its presuppositions are ultimately associated with the authority of law, and concludes that there may be critical losses not …


The Labor Board And The Arbitrators, Theodore J. St. Antoine Jan 1967

The Labor Board And The Arbitrators, Theodore J. St. Antoine

Other Publications

The Labor Relations Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan held its second program of the current year, from May 27 through May 30, 1967 on Mackinaw Island, on a variety of subject matters with excellent presentations by the resource people conducting each of the various symposiums. Those who were unable to be present in this joint venture of pleasure and legal presentations will be able to at least vicariously "gather in the sheaves" of the legal wisdom disseminated during the program by the report contained herein. For those who were fortunate enough to attend plus those who didn't, …


Administrative Law-Federal Administrative Procedure Act-The Supreme Court Gives The Act Its First Interpretation, Fred W. Freeman S.Ed. Jun 1950

Administrative Law-Federal Administrative Procedure Act-The Supreme Court Gives The Act Its First Interpretation, Fred W. Freeman S.Ed.

Michigan Law Review

The Federal Administrative Procedure Act received its first thorough consideration by the Supreme Court in the recent case of Wong Yang Sung v. McGrath. The Court held that deportation proceedings must conform to section 5, which provides for notice, opportunity for a hearing, separation of prosecution and quasi-judicial functions, and the issuance of declaratory orders by the agency, and to section 11, which prescribes an independent status for presiding officers. The scope of section 5 is limited to administrative adjudications "required by statute to be determined on the record after opportunity for an agency hearing." There is no specific requirement …