Public Service Commission of the State of New York v. Mid-Louisiana Gas Company

PETITIONER: Public Service Commission of the State of New York
RESPONDENT: Mid-Louisiana Gas Company
LOCATION: Residence of Gates

DOCKET NO.: 81-1889
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1981-1986)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

CITATION: 463 US 319 (1983)
ARGUED: Mar 22, 1983
DECIDED: Jun 28, 1983

ADVOCATES:
Jerome M. Feit - on behalf of the Petitioner
James D. McKinney, Jr. - on behalf of the Respondents

Facts of the case

Question

Media for Public Service Commission of the State of New York v. Mid-Louisiana Gas Company

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - March 22, 1983 in Public Service Commission of the State of New York v. Mid-Louisiana Gas Company

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - June 28, 1983 in Public Service Commission of the State of New York v. Mid-Louisiana Gas Company

Warren E. Burger:

The judgment and opinion of the Court in Public Service Commission of New York against Mid-Louisiana Gas and the consolidated cases will be announced by Justice Stevens.

John Paul Stevens:

In 1978, Congress enacted a statute called Natural Gas Policy Act which comprehensively changed the method of pricing natural gas produced in the United States.

Two years later, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission promulgated an order which in effect provided that gas produced by pipelines, by wells owned by pipelines would for the most part, not get the benefit of the new pricing procedures authorized by the statute.

The pipelines challenged the order on the ground that the statute was intended to cover production throughout the country whether by pipelines or independently owned wells or whatever the ownership of the well might be.

The Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that the statute was intended to include pipeline production and invalidated the order in question.

And the Government appealed or rather petition for certiorari to this Court and we granted certiorari to decide this question.

We agree with the Fifth Circuit and hold that the statute does include for sale pricing by pipeline who produce gas as well as others and therefore, we affirm the judgment of the Court of Appeals.

Justice White has filed a dissenting opinion in which he's joined by Justice Brennan, Justice Marshall and Justice Blackmun.

Warren E. Burger:

Thank you, Justice Stevens.