judgment was characterized as "highly expert. Only where the error is patent may we say that the Commission transgressed." 315 U.S. at page 482, 62 S. Ct. at page 726.
The question of the power of an administrative agency to draw inferences from proven facts was settled by Republic Aviation Corp v. National Labor Relations Board, 1945, 324 U.S. 793, 65 S. Ct. 982, 89 L. Ed. 1372. "An administrative agency with power after hearings to determine on the evidence in adversary proceedings whether violations of statutory commands have occurred may infer within the limits of the inquiry from the proven facts such conclusions as reasonably may be based upon the facts proven. One of the purposes which lead to the creation of such boards is to have decisions based upon evidential facts under the particular statute made by experienced officials with an adequate appreciation of the complexities of the subject which is entrusted to their administration. * * * Like a statutory presumption or one established by regulation, the validity, perhaps in a varying degree, depends upon the rationality between what is proved and what is inferred." 324 U.S. at pages 800, 804-805, 65 S. Ct. at page 986. Here there is obviously sufficient rational connection between what the commission found to have been proved and what it inferred.
Plaintiffs argue that, assuming the propriety of the inference, its application here is not consistent with its use in past decisions by the commission. But an agency may change its mind. If the application of the inference here was not improper, we may not be concerned that it may have been applied differently in other cases before the commission. Federal Communications Commission v. WOKO, Inc., 1946, 329 U.S. 223, 67 S. Ct. 213, 91 L. Ed. 204; Virginian Ry. v. United States, 1926, 272 U.S. 658, 665-666, 47 S. Ct. 222, 71 L. Ed. 463.
We are told that error was committed by the reference to Branch's original grandfather application. The order, read as a whole, however, convinces us that the application was alluded to only to set the scope of the issues before the commission and to show the obvious justification for Branch's asserted assumption that its original certificate authorized service at the now disputed points.
Nor do we think that Branch can be charged with such laches as to deprive the commission of power to act in this case. One can hardly be said to have delayed unreasonably in acquiring rights which he justifiably believed he had acquired years ago. Branch's clarification petition was filed shortly after its operating rights were questioned.
We conclude that the commission acted within its statutory authority and that there is a rational basis for its order. Therefore, the complaint will be dismissed.