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PENNSYLVANIA R.R. CO. v. SHARFSIN

April 5, 1965

The PENNSYLVANIA RAILROAD COMPANY, Plaintiff,
v.
Joseph SHARFSIN, P. Stephen Stahlnecker, Robert W. Anthony, William F.O'Hara and John L. Dorris, individually and as Commissioners of thePennsylvania Public Utility Commission, Defendants



The opinion of the court was delivered by: FOLLMER

Plaintiff, hereinafter called 'Railroad', is now and for many years last past has been a Pennsylvania corporation engaged as a common carrier in the transportation of persons and property by railroad in interstate commerce between the Cities of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Hagerstown, Maryland. Its principal office is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Defendants, Joseph Sharfsin, P. Stephen Stahlnecker, Robert W. Anthony, William F. O'Hara, and John L. Dorris, hereinafter called 'Commissioner', are now and for many years last past have been the duly appointed, qualified and acting members of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, hereinafter called 'P.U.C.', and said Commissioners are citizens and residents of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

 Railroad herein seeks injunctive relief restraining and enjoining the said Commissioners personally, and in their official capacities as Commissioners as aforesaid, from enforcing certain Orders of said P.U.C., and commanding said Commissioners to revoke and withdraw the said Orders of said P.U.C. and to dismiss the Rule to Show Cause issued upon Railroad.

 The parties, Railroad and Commissioners, filed a paper entitled 'Case Stated' in which it is averred:

 'It is agreed by the parties that Your Honorable Court can make all of its findings of fact in this case from the within 'Case Stated' and the exhibits attached thereto. Any party is free to urge upon the Court any findings of fact based upon the within 'Case Stated' and the exhibits attached hereto.'

 Since the facts and documents involved are not in dispute, the parties have submitted this 'Case Stated' to avoid the necessity of trial.

 A three-judge court was convened in pursuance to 28 U.S.C. § 2281. Briefs were filed and an argument was held.

 From the aforesaid 'Case Stated' it appears that,

 On August 9, 1962, Railroad instituted a suit in this Court to enjoin P.U.C. from enforcing its Order of July 9, 1962, requiring Railroad to restore and maintain service on its trains Nos. 638 and 645 operating between the City of Harrisburg and the Pennsylvania-Maryland boundary line.

 Suit was instituted in this Court under the Act of Congress of June 25, 1948, Chapter 646, 62 Stat. 931, 28 U.S.C. § 1337, and the Act of Congress of August 12, 1958, P.L. 85-625, Section 5, 72 Stat. 571, commonly known as the Transportation Act of 1958 and incorporated into the Interstate Commerce Act as Part I, 49 U.S.C. § 13a(1).

 The suit had its origin in an application filed by Railroad on November 29, 1960, before the P.U.C., seeking approval of its proposal to discontinue passenger train service of its said trains Nos. 638 and 645 operating daily between Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Hagerstown, Maryland.

 Protests were filed and after hearings were held, the P.U.C. denied the application on August 7, 1961. No appeal was taken from this Order in accordance with Section 1112 of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Law, 66 P.S. § 1442.

 On January 25, 1962, Railroad filed with Interstate Commerce Commission, hereinafter called 'I.C.C.', a 'Notice of Proposed Discontinuance of Service' under the provisions of Section 13a(1) of the Interstate Commerce Act, supra. Railroad also filed with I.C.C. a 'Statement in Relation to the Proposed Discontinuance of Interstate Passenger Trains 638 and 645' as required by regulations of I.C.C., and in other respects complied with Section 13a(1) and regulations aforesaid applicable thereto.


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