Department of the Navy v. Egan

PETITIONER: Department of the Navy
RESPONDENT: Egan
LOCATION: Hustler Magazine Headquarters

DOCKET NO.: 86-1552
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1988-1990)
LOWER COURT:

CITATION: 484 US 518 (1988)
ARGUED: Dec 02, 1987
DECIDED: Feb 23, 1988

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Department of the Navy v. Egan

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - December 02, 1987 in Department of the Navy v. Egan

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - February 23, 1988 in Department of the Navy v. Egan

William H. Rehnquist:

The opinion of the Court in No. 86-1552, Department of the Navy versus Egan will be announced by Justice Blackmun.

Harry A. Blackmun:

Well this case comes to us by a way of certiorari to the Federal Circuit and Title V of the United States Code provides a two-track system for undertaking an adverse action so-called against certain government employees.

Under one statute an employee who is removed for cause has a right of appeal to the Merit Systems Protection Board and that right includes a hearing.

Under another statute an employee is subject to summary reversal based on national security concerns and that removal is not appealable to the Board but the employee has specified procedural rights including a hearing by in the agency authority.

The respondent, Mr. Egan was removed from his labors job at the submarine facility.

After that Navy denied him the required security clearance.

Without that clearance he was not eligible for any job with the facility because all jobs there required a clearance.

He appealed to the Board.

It sustained the removal action.

The Federal Circuit reversed holding that review of the Merits of the underlying security clearance was in order.

In an opinion filed today, we reverse that judgment.

We hold that the Board, under the statute utilized, does not have the authority to review the substance of underlying security clearance determination.

Justice White has filed a dissenting opinion and is joined therein by Justices Brennan and Marshall, and Justice Kennedy again took no part in the consideration or decision of this case.